Controversy Around Genetic Ownership
“There are many ethical debates and controversy around genetic ownership. For instance, Henrietta Lacks. She was a black woman who went to the hospital for help due to a painful ‘knot’ in her womb. After being referred to John Hopkins, she is misdiagnosed and treated for the wrong illness, As she was going through ‘treatment’, tissue samples from her cervix were taken by an assistant without her consent or knowledge and given to Dr. George Otto Gey, who created a technique to nurture her cell and then shared them with scientist around the world. The controversy with her story is that there was she had no knowledge and didn´t give permission for her cells to be studied and mass produced, but no one said anything and the doctor was not held accountable for what he did before his death. As well as her family, and how they found out about the mother or sister, but not having health insurance while people are being cured and helped with her cells. Now, years later the debate is do you have the right to own peoples genes? And is that an ethically correct way to use science? It will always be a endless debate.
There are pros and cons to genetic ownership. To illustrate, a pro would be the ability for private companies to own genes allows them to look at the genes for as long as they need without competition of other companies trying to look at the cells too. But the con of that would be since only one company could patent the gene, it would slow down research and not allow other people to look at it who could find something new. Another pro would be the push and support of private research and industry. The opportunity to not only control your research and plan it but also profit off of it and have the power to plan all what you want to do out. The con to that would be that it could create the start of monopolizing genes. Also companies becoming stringy and not willing to share genes and allow progress and development. And a pro would be that it limits the dispute in the medical community on research and focus toward finding cures. A con would be the fight over”
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