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A recent medical discovery has got philosophers and scientists alike wondering how much is too much? New ethics debates arise after scientists grow in-lab five-week-old fetus brain that has all the reflexes and cognition abilities of a veritable human brain.
Human history has had its share of horrendous stories, some of them related to gruesome medical experiments that have been performed on animals and humans alike. Nazi doctor Mengele, for instance, has terrified the entire globe after some of his works have been revealed to the lay public.
A series of new ethics discussion was recently started after biological chemistry professor Rene Anand from the University of Ohio has revealed that he has grown his first fetus brain in a lab jar. Much to his dismay, his medical endeavor did not produce the desired outcome and many people have been terrified of the possible consequences of such achievement.
Anand on the other hand claims the five-week-old fetus brain signified the beginning of a new era in medicine, one that could see the cloning of human organs. He explained the media that the brain has been formed through the cultivation of stem cells from humans’’ skin. After a five-week gestation period, the small brain has even developed its own eye and spinal cord, the researcher further boasted.
As interesting as his work may seem, we cannot help but wonder where will this all lead. If the artificially created brain is capable of carrying out all human-like activities, it means that it may soon develop self-awareness, which qualifies it as a regular human being. One without a body and a mouth that would enable it to speak against possible harmful acts and defend itself.
If we were to take into consideration the current abortion rules, the lab-grown brain could be described as a living person once the 24-week threshold has been overcome. However, these rules can be easily contested should they be used for the current situation since there is no actual reference to lab-grown human organs.
For that matter, ethic researchers urge legal experts to either reconsider the current legislation and make it more appropriate for nowadays reality or to completely ban such experiments, which could be the beginning of humanity’s destruction. Many researchers fear Adnan’s patent for the lab-grown lab could trigger the interest of military authorities, who have been many times before accused of carrying out illegal experiments on organs that were withdrawn from dead or injured soldiers.
Adnan reassures the media that his work observes all the ethical rules. He will ignore all these scare tactics that prevent progress from happening and will continue to grow his fetus-like brain until it becomes 20 weeks old, the scientist has concluded.
Image source: www.hobby.cz