7.5. Issues and Ethics in Biotech and Genetic Engineering

lessfrustratedΒιοτεχνολογία

23 Οκτ 2013 (πριν από 3 χρόνια και 10 μήνες)

71 εμφανίσεις

Issues and Ethics in
Biotechnology

ETHICS


Set of moral principles governing an
individual’s action


Reflects morality (perception of what is
right)


Essential in making decisions

BIOETHICS


Ethics relating to biology and medicine


“…ethical analysis of normative problems in
the biomedical sciences, medical practices,
and health care management.”


Moral issues brought about by biological
advances

Genetic Engineering


The creation of genetically modified
organisms (GMOs)


These GMOs are created for various
purposes

Genetic Engineering


GM plants


Pest and herbicide resistance


Enhanced nutrition


Hardier varieties



GM Animals


Fast growth


Enhanced nutrition


Creation of therapeutic proteins (drugs,
vaccines)



Pest Resistance:
Bt

Corn

Herbicide Tolerance

“Roundup Ready”

Enhanced Nutrition

Golden rice

Issues of plant GMOs


GM crops may have adverse effects on
human consumers


Modified DNA from GM crops may
spread to non
-
modified crops with bad
consequences


Weeds and pests may adapt and mutate
to attack the GM crops, leading to more
vicious weeds and pests

GM Animals


Fast
-
growing salmon

Issues about transgenic animals


GM animals may
damage wild
populations


GM animals may
disrupt the
ecological balance


GM animals may
have adverse
effects on human
consumers

Ethical Arguments About
Biotechnology


Intrinsic
: Biotechnology is good/bad
in itself



Extrinsic
: Biotechnology is good/bad because
of:


its

consequences


the motivations behind:


advocacy of biotech
or


opposition to biotech

Intrinsic Arguments Against
Biotechnology


Premise: Genetic engineering is
unnatural.


Conclusion: Therefore, genetic
engineering is intrinsically wrong.


Is this a good argument?

Extrinsic Arguments About
Biotechnology


Biotechnology is good/bad because of its
consequences
.


Three ways to evaluate consequences:


Do no harm (avoid bad consequences).


Maximize good consequences and minimize bad ones
for all affected.


Justice: Fair distribution of good and bad consequences
among all affected.

Extrinsic Arguments About
Biotechnology


Biotechnology is good/bad because of
the motivations of its
proponents/opponents.

Extrinsic Arguments About
Biotechnology


Environmental consequences


Human health consequences


Who benefits?


Who decides?

Issues in DNA Sequencing


DNA sequencing


unmask the tendency
to acquire a genetic disease



Pros


The individual can make lifestyle changes
earlier to avoid disease


The individual can apply for genetic
treatment for such a disease


Earlier detection can possibly help in
psychological adjustments

Issues in DNA Sequencing


Cons


The genetic data can be used by others for
nefarious purposes


If not guarded properly, the genetic data
can become public


Insurance companies may use the genetic
data against the owner


Fear of the possibility of genetic
discrimination

Issues in Intellectual property


Who owns the right to the GMO?


Is the intellectual property ownership
fair?


Was the intellectual property claim
legitimate and proper?


Will commercialization of the
GMO/biotechnology lead to unfair
practices?

EXERCISE


Scientists at a government research institute
in the Philippines have developed the Ultimate
Rice in their work
funded by
Blackstar

Industries. Ultimate Rice is a breed of rice
capable of surviving floods and droughts,
resistant to pests, fast
-
growing, and with high
levels of vitamins. However,
Blackstar

Industries wants to market the rice on the
market. The government wants to sell it
cheap, while farmers want the government to
give it to them for free.

EXERCISE


Defend your positions as the:


Scientists who developed the Ultimate Rice
(
Rozul

)


Blackstar

Industries (Ruiz)


Farmers looking to grow the Ultimate Rice
(
Espinosa
)


The government research institute ()


Government agency on intellectual property
()