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  • Eric Gwon

Organ Transplant/Gene Editing

Surgeons in New York have successfully attached a kidney grown in a genetically altered pig to a human patient and found that the organ worked usually, a scientific breakthrough that one day may yield a vast new supply of organs for severely ill patients. Researchers have long sought to grow organs in pigs that are suitable for transplantation into humans. Technologies like cloning and genetic engineering have brought that vision closer to reality in recent years, but testing these experimental organs in humans has presented daunting ethical questions.

Every scientist and doctor has claimed and agreed that gene editing can save many patients’ lives. Many patients wait for organ donors for years for transplants just to live another five to ten years. However, most patients die even before they get a person to donate an organ or the operations. It is a highly complex process because the size of an organ and the blood type must match the patient’s dysfunctional organ. According to scientific research from “Donors,” more than a hundred thousand people in the United States are on the waiting list for an organ donor and transplant. Additionally, only thirty thousand people find a donor and receive a transplant each year. However, about seventeen to twenty people die each day due to a lack of organs.

While most people are awed and fascinated by the new evolution of health care, others still stand against organ transplants through gene editing. People who oppose organs should not be edited because DNA can be inherited from the next generation. They also believe that it is equivalent to creating an entirely new organism. Moreover, people who stand against it suggest that the genetic code is particular, and a single misplaced gene can have widespread effects. If humans get transplanted from pigs or other animals (gene-edited similar to humans to be transplanted), are those people “human”? Are all other animals and humans the same? Don’t animals have the same feeling as humans do? Don’t they have the right to live? In the end, the whole idea of gene editing from animal organs is to save as many struggling patients. However, to protect human civilization, some sacrifices must be made.

Considering the many benefits and risks of gene editing, many people can see that it may be a new generation for humans. Moreover, gene editing is honorable and ethical because most gene editing can be done by animals such as pigs and sh. These animals can allow providing organs for humans. It is society’s responsibility to encourage gene-editing without any concern for the problems it may cause. All scientists and doctors must initiate gene-editing to save patients.

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