Genetic testing has been on trend for some years now.PGD or the Preimplantation Genetic diagnosis along with IVF helps in successful completion of pregnancies.But apart from the scientific outlook , there is a moralist side to it which questions whether people should be given the right to remove any abnormal embryo. Also the ethicists asks to identify those disease which are really ‘serious’.Because there are genetic disorders which can be brought under control.Proper listing of genetic disease should be made that really requires PGD testing.The couple who are undertaking the IVF treatment should the pros and cons of PGD testing before making the fateful decision.
The technique of PGD testing-
PGD is a diagnosis which begins with an IVF cycle. The eggs are harvested and then fertilized with sperm.The embryos are allowed to develop .Then a single cell is removed and tested .The removed cell is analysed to detect the presence of chromosomal abnormalities.As soon as genetic disease are found in the tested cell;the carefully developed embryo is discarded.Then ,the healthy embryos are transferred to the woman’s uterus to complete the pregnancy term.In the process of removing and testing of the cell, the embryo is not harmed.The embryo is not all harmed;but the question arises as to the moral ground of discarding a carefully developed embryo.
To make the matters clear let us discuss the queries against PGD;
- Is it right to single out a healthy embryo from those with genetic disorders.
- Abortion means the death of an embryo;so when the embryos are discarded is it similar to abortion.?
- Many genetic disease do not rise under adulthood.Should such disorders be under scrutiny..
- PGD prevents the birth of certain diseases.But are these prevented diseases really serious.
- PGD practices discrimination to disabled people.
- It sends a wrong message that people with genetic disorders should be avoided.IT gives rise to eugenics;who wants perfectly healthy babies.
But apart from the moralist point of view;science lists out the various benefits of PGD.
Benefits of PGD
- To select an embryo which does not have any genetic disorders and have the best chance of survival.
- Genetic disease result in reduced quality of life or miscarriage;PGD helps to avoid it.
- By selecting the ‘fittest’ embryos the fertility clinic are giving the couple the chance of having healthy children.
- Couples who are in their 20’s and whose first child was born with genetic disorder.This couple can take the help of PGD to ensure that the second child is perfectly healthy.
- Genetic disorders can be wiped out slowly from the human race.
The couple who do not have an history of genetic disease need not take these test.But those parents who are carriers of genetic disease should take the PGD tests.Whatever the decision is it must be taken with proper consideration of family and mankind.