Despite the success of genetic engineering, this technology is considered a very controversial subject matter because of the ethical issues attached to it. To enable us to understand the controversy behind genetic engineering, the researcher will first define the meaning of genetic engineering followed by discussing the goal and benefits of genetic engineering versus the ethical problems related to genetic engineering in relation to religious beliefs. By weighing the benefits and consequences of genetic engineering, the researcher will conclude as to whether or not the study of genetic engineering should prevail.
The three main goals of genetic engineering are: (1) incorporate novel traits into familiar organisms. (2) create new sources of familiar products. and (3) create entirely new products. (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2008)
Medical researchers believe that stem cell research can be the answer to many human diseases. So far, there are already a number of current treatments that have already existed. According to some medical researchers, among the diseases, impairments and conditions that can be cured by stem cell technologies are: cancer such as bone marrow transplant (Kamada et al., 2005. Elaine, 2004), Parkinson’s disease (Wahlberg, 2005), leukemia (Science Daily, 2004a), spinal cord injuries (Klein &. Svendsen, 2005), and muscle damage (Science Daily, 2004b).
Despite the fact that the use of stem cell technology could cure a long list of fatal causing diseases, many of these promising treatments are still on the experimental stage due to financial difficulties aside from the social and ethical issues attached to it. .The Breakthrough in Cloning and the In Vitro FertilizationIn 1998, James Thomson derived the first human embryonic stem cell line at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. (Boyle, 2005) . The first breakthrough came was done on a sheep named Dolly – the first sheep born through cloning.  .