Human Genome Project

Topics: Genetics, DNA, Human genome Pages: 1 (365 words) Published: November 17, 2010
I think that there is a pretty mixed batch for support and opposition for the Human Genome Project. The HGP is a complex project that has ethical, medical, and legal ramifications. From a scientific point of view, the benefits of HGP are enormous. Arguments for HGP could include; expanding our knowledge of gene expression, discovering means of diagnosis and treatments for untreatable genetic diseases, discoveries in the development of drug resistant bacteria, increasing the productivity of livestock, allowing for the development of new crops, and improving the quality of our environment. For example; knowledge about the effects of DNA variations among people could lead to new ways to diagnose, treat, and perhaps someday prevent many of the disorders that plaque us. There are so many other unforeseen benefits from this research, but then you have the opponents, which wage a fairly good argument as well. Opponents argue against the HGP based on cost. Who has ownership of these genetic test results? Also the patenting of human genes and DNA, the grief a person and the family members might endure resulting from knowing that you or a loved one has an untreatable genetic disease, misuse of genetic information by insurance companies and employers, and the fear that this knowledge may be used to design a “super race.” A grotesquely inhumane example comes from Hitler’s use of eugenics to “improve” the human race and in doing so, decimated an entire continent in his quest for a so-called “master race.” "What nature does blindly, slowly and ruthlessly, man may do providently, quickly, and kindly. As it lies within his power, so it becomes his duty to work in that direction."- Sir Francis Galton (1905) This statement in no way represents my beliefs, I merely wanted to give an example of one of many who have voiced strongly for pro-eugenics over time. There are pros and cons to the Human Genome Project. There have to be policies implemented of course to...
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