Posted by: PD Warrior | August 27, 2007

Still very much on the fence…

I just finished reading another short article on the stem cell research that is being done for Parkinson’s Disease. The article itself is very interesting. Stem cell research being done on animals with PD has had some very positive outcomes.

In this particular study, primates that were injected with stem cells began to develope two different types of nerve cells – astrocytes- which produce a chemical that helps the brain to defend and repair itself – and dopamine producing cells. It is the lack of dopamine in the brain that causes PD.  The full article can be read at the following web address: Neuroscientist comments on stem cell study’s success in helping primates with Parkinson’s.

Certainly if this study can help the millions of people with PD, then I am all for it. I am also very fascinated with the wonderous way the human body functions, and I am all for gaining new knowledge/insight on the way things work.

Yet at the same time, I continue to struggle with the whole stem cell research thing. Morally I remain on the fence. Believe me when I say that I very selfishly want a cure for this disease. However, part of me can not help but wonder if in doing stem cell research we are not opening Pandora’s Box…

Ironically, when I first heard about the research I thought it was fantastic and supported it whole heartedly. Why is it that I find myself questioning the study now, when I of all people would very much benefit from its findings? 

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Responses

  1. I am in exactly the same moral quandary as you are. Since I have a science background, I can well see the danger of Pandora’s box. Add to that my belief that there is a human being there from conception – a view not all would agree with, and I’m doubly conflicted. I’m praying they find a way to use umbilical cord or other non embryonic stem cells, as this really does look like the way to cure Parkinson’s Disease.

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