During technology in testing and human trials. First, before

During fall 2017 semester, I took a stem cell biology lab, which consisted of six hours lab, and one hour of discussion every week. The lab was different from other biology lab I have taken before. For the first time, I had to work with mammalian stem cells, which were exciting to watching them grow and differentiate in a petri dish under the microscope. Despite my excitement that I was about to learning how to grow mammalian embryonic stem cells, I was surprised by just how many people, even some in my major, are skeptical about stem cell, and even in particular,  the major ethical concerns arising from the use of stem cell technology in testing and human trials. First, before we can discuss this issue, we must first define stem cells. According to the Committee on the Biological and Biomedical Applications of Stem Cell Research National Research Council, stem cells are unspecialized cells that replicate and have  the potential to become any cell type in the body (12). There are different types of stem cells in the body. Embryonic stem cells, which found in the inner cell mass of the blastocyst at the fifth day after fertilization (13). These cells also known as pluripotent cells and which can give the rise to three germ layers: the endoderm, mesoderm, and ectoderm, which them become all tissue type in the human body (12). Another type of stem cells is the adult stem cells that found in mostly every tissue in an adult. They can be either multipotent or unipotent. For example, Hematopoietic stem cells, which found in the red bone marrow, can give the rise for different type of blood cells (20). Finally, there are  skin stem cells which are  found in the bottom layer of skin tissue, which help heal our wounds when we are injured. They are also known as unipotent cells, which means they only can become skin cells not anything else (23). Finally, the most used in stem cells technology today is the induced pluripotent stem cells. Induced pluripotent stem cells are produced in the lab using adult somatic cells; such as skin cells, and reprogramming them using pluripotency growth factors to set back the cells into pluripotent stem cells stage that behave as embryonic stem cells (Takahashi et al., 861).The discussion raised from the ethical issues concerning embryonic stem cells is that many people have misconception about the way stem cells are obtained. Stem cells are obtained from embryos donated by couples who used in vitro fertilization (IVF) because they were unable to conceive naturally. The female usually goes under invasive surgery to obtained multiple eggs. For this reason, the clinic would have fertilized multiple embryos for the couples and freeze them, so they can implant them into the uterus whenever the couple are ready to have a baby. When couples do not want their embryos anymore, the couple can either donate them for stem cell research or the clinic would be required to flush them down the drain (NIH). This reality is often overlooked by many who voice against stem cell research; they believe that stem cells are obtained unethically and at the expense of a living embryo or that they are collected in a way that encourages the killing if embryos.. Since these embryos are destroyed either way, at the request of the couple and not the doctors, why don’t we take advantage of the unwanted embryos, that would have been destroyed anyway, for the benefit of humanity and scientific research?We asked the question of why people are skeptical about stem cells in general. As mentioned previously, when  the word embryonic is attached to stem cells, it often triggers an emotional response form many who immediately think of embryos and that scientists are murderers who are killing babies to advance science. However, the reality is not what most people believe as previously mentioned, those embryos were left to be disposed of. Also, not all stem cells are embryonic, scientists today are able to take and use a somatic cell, for example, skin cells are used to grow induced pluripotent stem cells for research purposes. It is difficult to watch people protest and fight against something they do not understand especially when many of them either have or will develop a disease or ailment that could one day be cured or treated  by stem cells through stem cell research.It’s important to note that most  researchers agree on the importance of stem cell biology and its potential to cure diseases and that it isn’t just a small hope. What’s great about embryonic stem cells is  that they are pluripotent stem cells, and they have the capacity to become or replace more than 200 cell types in the human body (Volarevic et al.).  On the January 1st, 2018, International Journal of Medical Science published an article saying, that “Results obtained from completed and on-going clinical studies indicate huge therapeutic potential of stem cell-based therapy in the treatment of degenerative, autoimmune and genetic disorders” (Volarevic et al.).  So, why are we still concerns about stem cells? and why is  this discussion is still an open ended one? Even with the technology we have today, stem cells research is still in its very  early stages, we still need years of intensive research to get to the level of confidence and understanding required in using stem cells in human clinical studies simply because of the risk associated with stem cells; cancer. However, to hinder stem cell research due to the lack of knowledge on the subject or the  chances of human errors with the addition to genetic mutations upon plantation, only keep hurdles in our way of advancing stem cells technology into one that can one day save the lives of many. Ethics are an important part of the discussion in the role and power of the scientific community but we must be aware of the effect we have on the future when we make arrangements against something we don’t fully understand. It is in our best interest to educate the public about stem cell research if we are to continue to develop this amazing science for the benefit of humanity because without it, there may be entire classes of diseases we may never be able to treat or cure, and that is a future that is a little less bright.