Skip to comments.Couples Cull Embryos to Halt Heritage of Cancer
Posted on 09/03/2006 1:55:46 PM PDT by Coleus
As Chad Kingsbury watches his daughter playing in the sandbox behind their suburban Chicago house, the thought that has flashed through his mind a million times in her two years of life comes again: Chloe will never be sick.
Not, at least, with the inherited form of colon cancer that has devastated his family, killing his mother, her father and her two brothers, and that he too may face because of a genetic mutation that makes him unusually susceptible.
By subjecting Chloe to a genetic test when she was an eight-cell embryo in a petri dish, Mr. Kingsbury and his wife, Colby, were able to determine that she did not harbor the defective gene. That was the reason they selected her, from among the other embryos they had conceived through elective in vitro fertilization, to implant in her mothers uterus.
Prospective parents have been using the procedure, known as preimplantation genetic diagnosis, or P.G.D., for more than a decade to screen for genes certain to cause childhood diseases that are severe and largely untreatable.
Now a growing number of couples like the Kingsburys are crossing a new threshold for parental intervention in the genetic makeup of their offspring: They are using P.G.D. to detect a predisposition to cancers that may or may not develop later in life, and are often treatable if they do.
For most parents who have used preimplantation diagnosis, the burden of playing God has been trumped by the near certainty that diseases like cystic fibrosis and sickle cell anemia will afflict the children who carry the genetic mutation that causes them.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
the slippery slope, the end does not justify the means.
Once government begins to define life and humanity, there is no end to the possibilities for subjective and selective determination as to who will be allowed to live.
Oh, isn't this a heartwarming story? They choose the kids they want, and kills those that they don't. Pelosi's heart must be warmed by this great news.
Graphic: Screening Embryos for Future Disease P.S. Enlarge the graphic to read it.
What do you do with your fingernail clippings? Do you mourn every time you spit? People discard small numbers of cells all the time. These embryos were not in the womb and would never develop into people unless placed there. I understand that it's a gray area but I'm pro-life and see nothing wrong with what they did.
I wonder if dad Chad wishes he'd been "culled."
No you are really not pro-life. You have defined the moment life begins, at implantation. This is not a "small amount of cells" this is a life, who has not yet been implanted in a womb. Life begins at conception.
Anyone see Gattaca ? The slippery slope of eugenics. Once you get down that path... it's pretty scary.
My fingernails do not go on to become children. We used to love and protect the unborn.
I understand your perspective. Even among embryos that do implant, a sizable fraction spontaneously abort with the woman not even aware she was pregnant.. we don't hold women for skipping a period, but not producing a child, as potential "child killers". However, there is a danger that this will cross from screening for a fatal disease to screen for something far more capricious... small height? low intelligence? blue eyes?
On the other hand, my sister went through the heartbreak of having a baby that had brain cancer. She died at 7.5 months, the last 6 weeks of her life spent in intensive care. Could she have been blamed for "pre-screening" if she had had the option? Not an easy choice.
Typical. Someone else's life isn't worth living if they (may) have a set of circumstances you wouldn't want. I wonder if the guy thinks his parents shouldn't have lived since they have colon cancer. I wonder if he develops it, will he regret having lived. I wonder what these people think sometimes. We are all going to die some day. Even if you can prolong it for decades, there's always the possibility of you just getting killed by younger people to get you out of the way. I guess you can live with principles or rationalizations.
Yes I have that clear right, i am a thinking human being after all. Sorry.In objective reality you are pro-life only after implantation of an embryo. This isn't a subjective issue. It is an objective reality that you don't accept that life begins at conception. If you are offended, oh well. Sorry, you are not pro-life.
That's the most sane post I've read on one of these threads in a long time. Good for you.
They are cells in a petri dish...
This is just Eigenics at an earlier stage than was available before. Oh I know they will say it does prevent human suffering including that of the child, parents and society.
Hildy, you forgot to say how glad you are that all those nasty embryos were killed good and dead, just like Terry Schiavo. (Oh, and tell us you're pro-life too.)
Maybe the problem is that we let them be in the petri dish at all. I know that is not what people want to hear. But one wrong may not justify leading to another wrong. Just something to ponder.
In the year 6565
Ain't gonna need no husband, won't need no wife
You'll pick your son, pick your daughter too
From the bottom of a long glass tube
-Zager & Evans, "In The Year 2525"
Ha. I don't believe there have been any clones.
My fingernails do not have a soul.
> They choose the kids they want, and kills those that they don't.
The number of children produced, however, remains more or less constant. Whether embryos composed only of a few cells can be considered "kids" is something that can be reasonable and rationally debated.
The other side of the coin, using the same rhetoric you seem to be using, is this: "So you *want* children to die horribly of cancer."
> Life begins at conception.
Life beings *before* conception. Sperm and eggs are alive, after all. The question is not when does "life" begins (about 2 billion years ago...) but when "human life worthy of legal protection" begins.
> My fingernails do not have a soul.
Does an embryo?
If you wish to base laws on such a belief, stand ready to demonstrate the factual nature of your belief, in objective, reproducible scientific terms.
Yes, I just love death..I'm wearing my black robe right now. You're an idiot.
Since we are all going to die someday, having any kids means you want more people to die.
Not really. It's the same baby, just at a different time in it's development. Why should age be the determining factor in whether it's OK to end a life or not? It's murder when it's any other stage of someone's existance. When age is the determining factor in deciding someone's humanness, the slippery slope has begun, like it is now.
> Since we are all going to die someday
Speak for yourself. I plan to live forever.
Just for the record, I disagree with you based on my study of human development and embryology. Post #32 was sarcasm. I am unsure if your post is sarcasm as well.
I do not believe that just because someone may die of cancer someday is a good reason to prevent them from reaching that stage.
I think this practice of screening embryos is just to ease the minds of parents who just couldn't stand the thought that "their perfect baby" could have a genetic "defect".
People need to grow up. Maybe their "perfect" baby will become an alcoholic.
Are you planning on downloading your consciousness into a computer? What's your plan?
I think I am going to be ill. Crohn's, anyone? ADHD?
The Nazi's called it "Lebensunwertsleben," the life not worth living.
Conception = Conception, not conceived in a womb, not conceived while wanted, etc.
I have psoriasis, I really wish my parents had aborted me, I mean, come on, I have to make sure I moisturize every-day, the HORROR! /sarcasm off.
Yes, because you don't have a right to kill someone, even if they die a "horrible" death of cancer. It is God's right to give and take life, not yours.
OK, so you would prefer to have kids that would die horribly of ass-cancer, rather than kids that wouldn't... because that's what you're suggesting here.
Left to nature, these parents would have kids who would carry a Horrible Gene. But thanks to medical science, these parents can still have kids, just kids without the Horrible Gene. Is it some great tragedy that the kids with the Horrible Gene won't get born? Won't, in fact, get implanted? No more so than it's a great tragedy that any particular egg fails to fertilize or a fertilized egg gets spontaneously aborted. There are great tragedies enough in life to get all emo about a few non-implanted cells.
Human Life begins at conception. I have never had a beer with a zygote.
> It is God's right to give and take life
Then it is God's responsibility to take care of the cell in the petri dish, ain't it.
Something to do with stem cells.
No, it is the person who made the embryo in the petri dish's duty to take care of it, i.e. the parents.
You can dress eugenics up all you want, it is still murder.
killing his mother, her father and her two brothers,
Maybe the mother and father were young breeders? These aren't children (under 18) dying. They were adults well into reproductive age as they had their own kids. But, I guess living to 45, 60, 70 isn't worth it if you die of ass cancer. Better to die of alzheimers at 90 or congestive heart failure at 55 or something else. What the hell do people think "dying of old age" means? People are going to die someday from some thing. (Unless, of course, you're orionblamblam and have a Secret Plan.)
And if you've been paying attention, the birth rate in the West, including the US, has been falling for years. The population has only been stable because of immigration. When the Muslims move in and take over you just might be an annoying old white guy they'd rather be without. So much for that living forever.