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Published on February 15, 2008

Author: Doride

Source: authorstream.com

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Ethical Challenges of Biotechnology :  Ethical Challenges of Biotechnology Pattle P.Pun, Ph.D. Professor of Biology, Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL 60187 USA Biotechnology::  Biotechnology: The use of living organisms to solve problems or make useful products. Human Genome Project:  Human Genome Project Goals:  ■ identify all the approximate 30,000 genes in human DNA, ■ determine the sequences of the 3 billion chemical base pairs that make up human DNA, ■ store this information in databases, ■ improve tools for data analysis, ■ transfer related technologies to the private sector, and ■ address the ethical, legal, and social issues (ELSI) that may arise from the project.   Milestones: ■ 1990: Project initiated as joint effort of U.S. Department of Energy and the National Institutes of Health ■ June 2000: Completion of a working draft of the entire human genome ■ February 2001: Analyses of the working draft are published ■ April 2003: HGP sequencing is completed and Project is declared finished two years ahead of schedule U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Slide7:  What does the draft human genome sequence tell us? By the Numbers • The human genome contains 3 billion chemical nucleotide bases (A, C, T, and G).  • The average gene consists of 3000 bases, but sizes vary greatly, with the largest known human gene being dystrophin at 2.4 million bases.  • The total number of genes is estimated at around 30,000--much lower than previous estimates of 80,000 to 140,000.  • Almost all (99.9%) nucleotide bases are exactly the same in all people.  • The functions are unknown for over 50% of discovered genes. U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Slide8:  What does the draft human genome sequence tell us? How It's Arranged • The human genome's gene-dense "urban centers" are predominantly composed of the DNA building blocks G and C.   • In contrast, the gene-poor "deserts" are rich in the DNA building blocks A and T. GC- and AT-rich regions usually can be seen through a microscope as light and dark bands on chromosomes.   • Genes appear to be concentrated in random areas along the genome, with vast expanses of noncoding DNA between.   • Stretches of up to 30,000 C and G bases repeating over and over often occur adjacent to gene-rich areas, forming a barrier between the genes and the "junk DNA." These CpG islands are believed to help regulate gene activity.   • Chromosome 1 has the most genes (2968), and the Y chromosome has the fewest (231). U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Slide9:  What does the draft human genome sequence tell us? The Wheat from the Chaff • Less than 2% of the genome codes for proteins.   • Repeated sequences that do not code for proteins ("junk DNA") make up at least 50% of the human genome.   • Repetitive sequences are thought to have no direct functions, but they shed light on chromosome structure and dynamics. Over time, these repeats reshape the genome by rearranging it, creating entirely new genes, and modifying and reshuffling existing genes.   • The human genome has a much greater portion (50%) of repeat sequences than the mustard weed (11%), the worm (7%), and the fly (3%). U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Slide10:  What does the draft human genome sequence tell us? How the Human Compares with Other Organisms • Unlike the human's seemingly random distribution of gene-rich areas, many other organisms' genomes are more uniform, with genes evenly spaced throughout.  • Humans have on average three times as many kinds of proteins as the fly or worm because of mRNA transcript "alternative splicing" and chemical modifications to the proteins. This process can yield different protein products from the same gene.  • Humans share most of the same protein families with worms, flies, and plants; but the number of gene family members has expanded in humans, especially in proteins involved in development and immunity. U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Slide11:  What does the draft human genome sequence tell us? Variations and Mutations • Scientists have identified about 3 million locations where single-base DNA differences (SNPs) occur in humans. This information promises to revolutionize the processes of finding chromosomal locations for disease-associated sequences and tracing human history.   • The ratio of germline (sperm or egg cell) mutations is 2:1 in males vs females. Researchers point to several reasons for the higher mutation rate in the male germline, including the greater number of cell divisions required for sperm formation than for eggs. U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 How does the human genome stack up?:  How does the human genome stack up? Anticipated Benefits of Genome Research:  Anticipated Benefits of Genome Research Molecular Medicine • improve diagnosis of disease • detect genetic predispositions to disease • create drugs based on molecular information • use gene therapy and control systems as drugs • design “custom drugs” (pharmacogenomics) based on individual genetic profiles Microbial Genomics • rapidly detect and treat pathogens (disease-causing microbes) in clinical practice • develop new energy sources (biofuels) • monitor environments to detect pollutants • protect citizenry from biological and chemical warfare • clean up toxic waste safely and efficiently U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Anticipated Benefits of Genome Research-cont.:  Risk Assessment • evaluate the health risks faced by individuals who may be exposed to radiation (including low levels in industrial areas) and to cancer-causing chemicals and toxins Bioarchaeology, Anthropology, Evolution, and Human Migration • study evolution through germline mutations in lineages • study migration of different population groups based on maternal inheritance • study mutations on the Y chromosome to trace lineage and migration of males • compare breakpoints in the evolution of mutations with ages of populations and historical events U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Anticipated Benefits of Genome Research-cont. Anticipated Benefits of Genome Research-cont.:  DNA Identification (Forensics) • identify potential suspects whose DNA may match evidence left at crime scenes • exonerate persons wrongly accused of crimes • identify crime and catastrophe victims • establish paternity and other family relationships • identify endangered and protected species as an aid to wildlife officials (could be used for prosecuting poachers) • detect bacteria and other organisms that may pollute air, water, soil, and food • match organ donors with recipients in transplant programs • determine pedigree for seed or livestock breeds • authenticate consumables such as caviar and wine   U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Anticipated Benefits of Genome Research-cont. Anticipated Benefits of Genome Research-cont.:  Agriculture, Livestock Breeding, and Bioprocessing • grow disease-, insect-, and drought-resistant crops • breed healthier, more productive, disease-resistant farm animals • grow more nutritious produce • develop biopesticides • incorporate edible vaccines incorporated into food products • develop new environmental cleanup uses for plants like tobacco U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Anticipated Benefits of Genome Research-cont. Medicine and the New Genetics:  Anticipated Benefits: • improved diagnosis of disease earlier detection of genetic predispositions to disease rational drug design gene therapy and control systems for drugs personalized, custom drugs Medicine and the New Genetics U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Gene Testing  Pharmacogenomics  Gene Therapy Sustained Correction of X-Linked Severe Combined Immunodeficiency by ex Vivo Gene Therapy, NEJM 346:1185-1193 April 18, 2002:  Sustained Correction of X-Linked Severe Combined Immunodeficiency by ex Vivo Gene Therapy, NEJM 346:1185-1193 April 18, 2002 Methods CD34+ bone marrow cells from five boys with X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency were transduced ex vivo with the use of a defective retroviral vector. Integration and expression of the c transgene and development of lymphocyte subgroups and their functions were sequentially analyzed over a period of up to 2.5 years after gene transfer. Behavior is Multifactorial:  Environment Development Genes Behavior Behavior is Multifactorial Sin? Classical Methods for Studying the Relationship between Genes and Behavior:  Classical Methods for Studying the Relationship between Genes and Behavior Twins Same genes different environments Adoptees Different genes same environment Heritability of Various Psychiatric Diseases, Personality Traits And Behaviors:  *Heritability is the fraction of total variability due to genetic differences. It is determined by studying twins and adoptees. Heritability of Various Psychiatric Diseases, Personality Traits And Behaviors Phenotype Heritability* Schizophrenia .60 Bipolar disorder .62 Major depression .40 Social phobia .52 Panic disorder .42 Generalized anxiety disorder .35 Neuroticism .52 Extraversion .38 Novelty Seeking .45 Cigarette smoking .60 Divorce .52 Religious affiliation .00 Although many behaviors are partially heritable, most of the genes are unknown:  For example… Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder: Dozens of loci have been identified by linkage mapping, but only a few have been replicated in at least one study and none in every study. No specific genes have been found. Personality traits such as Neuroticism and Novelty Seeking: Specific genes have been found, but they account for only a few percent of total variance. Although many behaviors are partially heritable, most of the genes are unknown Behavior Gene Discovery:  Behavior Gene Discovery Complications Multiple genes Environment is important Plieotropy Measurement Mapping Genes To Traits Trait 1 Gene Trait 2 Trait 3 Gene 1 Trait Gene 2 Gene 3 Mapping Traits To Genes Slide26:  The Number of Genes Involved in Particular Behaviors is Unknown environment environment or gene 1 gene 6 gene1 gene 100 ? Technology of cloning:  Technology of cloning Technology of Stem Cell Research:  Technology of Stem Cell Research Slide33:  Cells isolated from murine skeletal muscle have a remarkable capacity for hematopoietic differentiation Promises of Adult Stem Cell Research Hematopoietic potential of stem cells isolated from murine skeletal muscle Kathyjo Ann Jackson, Tiejuan Mi, and Margaret A. Goode Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1999 December 7; 96(25): 14482–14486 - Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure :  Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure 1. Embryonic stem cells have produced disappointing results for juvenile diabetes Because of the difficulty of getting ESCs to differentiate into desired tissues, the risk of tumor formation, the genetic instability of ESCs in culture, and other problems, ESCs cannot be expected to provide treatments for juvenile diabetes anytime soon. S. Sipione et al., “Insulin expressing cells from differentiated embryonic stem cells are not beta cells,” 47 Diabetologia 499-508 (2004). Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure :  Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure 2. ADULT islet cells have reversed juvenile diabetes in hundreds of patients in clinical trial “of the 250 patients who have received the newest version of the transplant, more than 80 percent have been free from insulin shots or insulin pumps for more than a year .” D. Wahlberg, “New islet cells put into liver,” The Atlanta Journal- Constitution, June 1, 2003, at www.ajc.com/health/content/health/special/0603/01exdiabetic_sidebar.html. Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure :  Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure 3. Problems of supply and tissue rejection in the Edmonton protocol are being addressed. NIH researchers have shown that a prior transplant of adult bone marrow stem cells can prevent rejection of islet cell transplants in mice, without use of anti-rejection drugs News Release, American Society of Hematology, “Researchers Look to Stem Cell Therapy and Bone Marrow Transplants to Find a Cure for Diabetes,” December 8, 2003, at www.hematology.org/news/press/press_120903_5.cfm?pagemode=print Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure:  Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure 4. ADULT stem cells are advancing to create entirely new therapies for juvenile diabetes. “Researchers in Canada have shown that transplanted adult stem cells from bone marrow can cause pancreatic tissue to repair itself, restoring normal insulin production and reversing symptoms of diabetes.”  “Transplanted Bone Marrow Stem Cells Reverse Diabetes in Mice,” JDRF Countdown, Fall 2003, p. 6. See D. Hess et al., “Bone marrow-derived stem cells initiate pancreatic regeneration,” 21 Nature Biotechnology 763-70 (2003). Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure:  Embryonic Stem Cells, Cloning, Are Not Necessarily Path To Cure 5. “Therapeutic Cloning” is Useless in Treating Juvenile Diabetes “…autoimmune diseases, including type 1 diabetes.  In such cases transfer of immunologically identical cells to a patient is expected to induce the same rejection .” I. Wilmut, “Human cells from cloned embryos in research and therapy,” 328 British Medical Journal 415-6 (2004) Nuclear Reprogramming of Somatic Cells After Fusion with Human Embryonic Stem Cells. Science:2005 vol:309 iss:5739 pg:1369 :  Nuclear Reprogramming of Somatic Cells After Fusion with Human Embryonic Stem Cells. Science:2005 vol:309 iss:5739 pg:1369 The Harvard University team fused lab-grown embryonic stem cells with the adult cells to create the new stem cell. Researchers believe these hybrid embryonic stem cells could help disease research without using human embryos. Unsociable Cyborgs, David Fletcher, Wheaton College:  Unsociable Cyborgs, David Fletcher, Wheaton College A deliberate integration, called “converging technology,” will unite nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology, and cognitive technologies with the goal of enhancing human performance. Because we are not simply isolated individuals who are free to tweak ourselves at will. Other people will have to live with us. Individuals must content themselves with staying merely human and must resist the temptation to change into something that is supposed to be superhuman Slide42:  Ethical Challenges of Biotechnology ELSI: Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues:  ELSI: Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues • Privacy and confidentiality of genetic information. • Fairness in the use of genetic information by insurers, employers, courts, schools, adoption agencies, and the military, among others. • Psychological impact, stigmatization, and discrimination due to an individual’s genetic differences. • Reproductive issues including adequate and informed consent and use of genetic information in reproductive decision making. • Clinical issues including the education of doctors and other health-service providers, people identified with genetic conditions, and the general public about capabilities, limitations, and social risks; and implementation of standards and quality‑control measures. U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs, Genomics and Its Impact on Science and Society, 2003 Slide45:  Should there be governmental regulations on Stem Cell Research? Is Reproductive Cloning Ethical? What should be the proper treatment of “surplus embryos”? A. Various Ethical Principles informed by the Christian Worldview::  A. Various Ethical Principles informed by the Christian Worldview: 1. Divine Law of Aquinas and Augustine:  1. Divine Law of Aquinas and Augustine The Creator has designed purposes and directions for His creation. This Divine Law can be discovered in Nature. Despite man's sinful nature, God still reveals this Law to man through the Scripture and the Church. The Divine Law is consonant with human nature and can be universally applied. 2. God's Steward in His Creation::  2. God's Steward in His Creation: Human's participation in creation as a significant part of man's stewardship of God's creation demands his respect for nature, not his exploitation. Man has to maintain two attitudes in exercising his stewardship of nature: to be grateful towards his Creator, and to be prudent towards managing the creation. 3. The Ethics of Virtue:  3. The Ethics of Virtue A virtuous person is driven to do good deeds not by the mores of his institutions, but by his own virtuous disposition. The Scriptures define virtuous disposition as the internal desire to be good and to do good, not only based on ones' education and upbringing, but on the freedom from the bondage of sin and the fruits of the Holy Spirit in a repentant sinner. B. Towards a Christian Model of Ethics: What Constitute a Perfect Human Being?:  B. Towards a Christian Model of Ethics: What Constitute a Perfect Human Being? “Therefore you are perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect” Mt. 5:48 The concept of a Perfect Human Being as defined by scriptural perspectives should help in the discussion of the ethics of HGP since it defines the essence of what is being human as well as the criteria by which genetic technologies should be applied particularly in relation to man himself.:  The concept of a Perfect Human Being as defined by scriptural perspectives should help in the discussion of the ethics of HGP since it defines the essence of what is being human as well as the criteria by which genetic technologies should be applied particularly in relation to man himself. 1. Creature of God: Confined by Finitude:  1. Creature of God: Confined by Finitude There is a limit within which human intervention to save life can operate since man is doomed to die because of our sin. However, advancement in medical and genetic technologies can ultimately be the instruments that God uses to manifest His work in ameliorating the effects of sin and decay 2. Created to Enjoy and Glorify God:  2. Created to Enjoy and Glorify God Health can be defined more holistically as "the strength to be human”, not to pursue total fulfillment. The paradox of the evils in the world under the benevolence of the Creator can only be solved in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. While eliminating human suffering is a noble cause, there may be a higher purpose for some incurable diseases after all human efforts are exhausted. 3. Made Alive by the Direct Involvement of God:  3. Made Alive by the Direct Involvement of God God's direct involvement in human life is evident in the act of breathing into the nostrils of man in creation. Genetic engineering of germ cells or the cloning of adult human beings cross the border line of depriving the offspring yet to be born of the freedom to choose the direction of his/her life, a gift uniquely given only by the Creator Himself. 4. Created to be God's Steward:  4. Created to be God's Steward As stewards of God's creation, Christians should be the salt and light of the world and actively provide leadership in establishing ethical principles for the HGP and the applications of biotechnology, instead of being the obscurantists who oppose technological advance for the sake of tradition. 5. Created in His Image: Divine Moral Law:  5. Created in His Image: Divine Moral Law All human beings are created in the Image of God. Although the Fall depraved man's divine conscience, the church and the social institutions have the obligations to uphold God's Divine Moral Laws which are meant to bring welfare to individuals and to societies. The Golden Rule was meant for the survival and stability of human society. The genetic information of individuals should be guarded as one's private property and is to be protected against unjustified intrusion. 6. Creature Representing Creation to God:  6. Creature Representing Creation to God The Fall brought about the three fold alienation of man: (1) with the Creator, (2) with fellow creatures, (3) with the creation, resulting in the loss of spiritual, social and physical health respectively. Man representing the creation in reconciliation in each of these 3 levels through Jesus Christ brings man into harmony with God and the creation in the healing process. Without the covenantal relationship of reconciliation in each of these 3 levels, holistic health and environmental integrity cannot be achieved 7. Conformed to the Image of the Incarnate Word. :  7. Conformed to the Image of the Incarnate Word. Based on the historical fact of Christ's resurrection, the redemption of our bodies at Christ's second coming is the consummation of all creation, which eagerly awaits its liberation from its bondage to decay and deliverance into the glorious freedom of the children of God. By conforming to the image of Christ, man is justified and will be glorified when his lowly body is transformed to be like His glorious body. It is therefore wrong to look for the domination of creation including the elimination of human suffering outside the lordship of Christ in other earthly powers such as those of the state and science and technology 1. Prohibition on Genetic Discrimination in Employment and Insurance.:  1. Prohibition on Genetic Discrimination in Employment and Insurance. 2. Establishing Uniform Rule to Protect Genetic Privacy (i.e. HIPAA):  2. Establishing Uniform Rule to Protect Genetic Privacy (i.e. HIPAA) HIPAA: Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996:  HIPAA: Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 PROTECTING THE PRIVACY OF PATIENTS' HEALTH INFORMATION : The rule does not restrict the ability of doctors, nurses and other providers to share information needed to treat their patients. In other situations, though, personal health information generally may not be used for purposes not related to health care, and covered entities may use or share only the minimum amount of protected information needed for a particular purpose. In addition, patients would have to sign a specific authorization before a covered entity could release their medical information to a life insurer, a bank, a marketing firm or another outside business for purposes not related to their health care. http://www.hhs.gov/news/facts/privacy.html Agriculture Biotechnology:  Agriculture Biotechnology 108th CONGRESS 1st Session S. RES. 154 Expressing the support of the Senate of United States efforts in the World Trade Organization to end the unwarranted moratorium imposed by the European Union on the approval of agricultural biotechnology products. IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES May 23, 2003 http://thomas.loc.gov/home/search.html

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