Web Evaluation Essay

Pages: 4 (1215 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 3  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Junior  ·  Topic: Medicine

Stem Cell Website

Stem Cell Research: Comparative Web Portal Analysis

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Stem Cell research is a highly controversial issue in public life today. A process which carries the promising implications of treatment for health maladies that presently have no cure such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases, stem cell research also invoked emotionally charged debate with roots in the 'right to life' issue often raised by conservatives and religious advocacy groups. Any legitimate philosophical consideration of stem-cell research must proceed from an elaboration over the scientific implications of such a process, as these advances in our understanding of genetics and human physiology have precipitated the ambitions for such capacities as cellular reproduction and the elimination of genetic and neurologically degenerative diseases. The scientific debate over stem-cell research is comprised of both matters of scientific feasibility and medical ethicality, with either facet still as yet unsettled. The term cloning is often used within the framework of the scientific discussion, working from a generally accepted definition of rendering a genetically identical copy of an organism from its own cellular sample. The dichotomy of perspectives on stem cell research as well as the sheer scientific and medical complexity of its implications has produced a bevy of available online sources elucidating the subject. As a result, there is a distinct challenge present in researching the subject objectively. With the glut of information available and the wide range of political and ideological agendas that might underscore said information, it is important to evaluate in depth one's chose informational resources. This is the understanding that precedes the present evaluation of two exhaustive web portals relating to the subject of stem cell research. The following discussion offers a comparative analysis of Research America: An Alliance for Discoveries in Health and Sanford Burnham Medical Research Institute, with the intent of determining which is ultimately the more valuable research instrument.

Essay on Web Evaluation Assignment

Before investigating each site's particular handling of the stem cell issue, it is essential to gain a grounded understanding of the identity and credentials offered by each. Accordingly, we review the 'About Us' link from each site. Research America describes itself as the largest non-profit group in America working to create 'research to improve health.' Its cited goals are the courtship of funding for medical research, to improve public knowledge of the benefits of such funding, to parlay this into public support for expanded research objectives and to empower the public to engage its public health system more actively through community action and a greater body of shared public knowledge. Now, prior even to investigating its discussion on stem cell research, we recognize that Research America is highly likely to take a strong position of advocacy for research furthering our understanding of stem cell research and for funding of this research to be derived from public funding.

By a slight contrast, the Sanford Burnham Medical Research Institute describes itself into distinctly apolitical terms. In its 'About Us' statement, Sanford Burnham identifies itself as seeking "to understand the underlying biological mechanisms that generate good health or, when they go awry, cause disease. The Institute employs nearly 900 scientists who dedicate their careers to answering these fundamental biological questions. With five research centers and world-class capabilities in drug discovery, stem cells, nanomedicine and translational medicine, Sanford-Burnham is working to discover the next generation of treatments for cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, infectious and inflammatory diseases, diabetes, childhood diseases and many other conditions."

Though its agenda is clearly also likely to deliver it to a place of advocacy of a broadening of stem cell research opportunities, its priorities appear to differ somewhat from those of Research America. Certainly, the two entities represented in… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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