Alternate nuclear transfer is no alternative for embryonic stem cell research
Fennel, John A.
Bioethics 2008 February; 22(2): 84-91
Recent developments allow for the creation of human stem cells without the creation of human embryos, a process called alternate nuclear transfer ('ANT'). Pursuing this method of stem cell research makes sense for pro-lifers if arguments for the sanctity of the human embryo do not apply to ANT. However, the technology that makes ANT possible undermines the erstwhile technical barrier between human embryos and somatic cell DNA. These advances bring home the force of hypothetical arguments about the potential of the DNA in somatic cells, showing that there is not a morally relevant difference between the potential of an embryo and the potential of the DNA in a somatic cell. Therefore, the supposed distinction between entities that are potential human life and entities that are human life does not give any support to arguments for the sanctity of the human embryo because those arguments extend value to too many entities.
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