When it comes to scientific research and findings, many schools of thought and critique do exist, some based merely on the methodology used while others for the very reason of carrying out the research. One such highly debated project is the Human Genome Project, a scientific research geared towards understanding the complex nature of human genes. This paper aims at finding out the benefit of this project and ascertaining whether the scientific research and their findings done through the Human Genome Project can be justified. Therefore, the discussion in this paper narrows its scope to ascertaining whether scientists are morally entitled to spend millions of dollars and time in their research or their findings will contradict their methodology as per that old adage, “Do the means justify the end?”
Human Genome Project (HGP) started in the 1980s with an aim to specifically carry out a scientific study of how genes align themselves in the human body, how they malfunction and ways to remedy this. According to (Reece 403) a gene is simply “a discrete unit of genetic information that is required in the production of a polypeptide and comprises of the coding sequence, the sponsor and terminator as well as introns”. Genome represents the generic composition in any living thing organism. According to Reece, the Human Genome Project as a scientific study of genes involves storing them in a gene library and eventually mastering how the human body functions through a process called genetic engineering.
The myths relating to the Human Genome Project
The level of criticism and scientific debate elicited from such projects such as HGP implies that it is fundamentally important to seek the opinions of all stakeholders involved. One such myth revolves around the issue of mutation as a primary cause of key diseases. Some critics suggest that diseases, the majority of which scientists relate to malfunctioning of the gene sequence, are nothing but normal disorders while others attribute their origin to curses or the environment. In the contrary, Reece presents evidence that confirms mutations in humans do happen because of the disorder in the arrangement of some very small units in the genes, thereby causing diseases. When scientists find ways of reordering the sequence of these genes, people should appreciate rather than complain and HGP is research geared towards this truth (Reece 287-313).
It is important to get to the inner details regarding the Human Genome project and one needs to study keenly the blueprint of this project. The HGP critics have strongly tried to persuade us that this project will eventually lead to full sequencing of all human genes (Cooper 71-72) but no scientist has this in mind.
Genetic testing, genetic engineering and genetic cloning
Genetic mapping has been with us for long but had not accomplished much until the time HGP begun (Cooper 72). In future, Cooper indicates that genetic testing; genetic engineering and genetic cloning...