Where is genome research leading us?
Human genome research has already led us to the conclusion that the genome molecular coding language required to specify a human being has more than three billion letters based upon a four-letter alphabet. This discovery along with previous discoveries of the extreme complexity of body parts, organs, and functions have really raised questions about the validity of the current prominent belief in the scientific community that we originated through natural random evolutionary processes.
Evolutionists are at a loss to explain the eye and the brain. Michael Behe discovered that the human cell is similar to a very complex machine. This would be better described as a very, very complex factory. He also identified that such machines have just the right amount of parts, chemicals etc. and if any one item was missing that the cell could not function. He called this irreducible complexity. Darwin's book, "The Origin of the Species," states that if it could be shown that life and life components could not form gradually, his theory would completely break down. Irreducible complexity in living systems causes Darwin's theory to break down. These pieces of the puzzle appear to be falling into place. Based upon all this evidence and more, scientists have proposed the theory of intelligent design since it is far more consistent with the evidence than evolution.
Although the identification of the human genome code and that of other life organisms has been well documented and understood, how it functions in living organisms is a study that will take years to improve our understanding. The more that can be learned the better we will be equipped to put that knowledge to work to effect our lives in a positive way. The first practical goal of genetics research is to improve health through gene therapy. Great strides have already been made even before genome research fully mapped the human genome. Bone marrow transplants have been the first major step in this direction. They have been very successful in treating certain diseases like leukemia.
It is expected that gene therapy will be expanded greatly in the coming years. Beyond gene therapy goals are cloning, enhancing the human body permanently, and allowing the enhancement to be passed on to our children. These goals will require not only an increase in our understanding, but the use of stem cells. Stem cells taken from embryos have been very controversial because the removal of the DNA kills the embryo. Many believe that embryonic stem cells hold the most promise to meet future goals. However, the most significant successes so far have come from non-embryonic stem cells.
In December of 2004 it was announced that a South Korean woman, paralyzed and bedridden for 20 years, is walking again, after doctors repaired her damaged spine by using stem cells, derived from umbilical cord blood. This amazing breakthrough serves as further evidence that the creation and destruction of life is not necessary in order to treat ailing human beings with stem cells.
Learn more about the Human Genome Project.
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