The Three Parent Baby Phenomenon

Is it an innovative method that will prevent diseases caused by mutations in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) or a threat to humanity? Scientists have thoroughly debated the three-parent-baby phenomenon, especially since the United Kingdom became the first country to legalize mtDNA transfer in February 2015 [1]. The term “three-parent-babies” refers to infants born through an in-vitro fertilization where the mitochondria are …

Space Gold: The Economic Feasibility of Asteroid Mining

On November 12, 2014 Philae became the first robotic spacecraft to land on a comet nucleus, which is the solid part of a comet usually composed of rock, dust and frozen gases. As part of the Rosetta mission, the European Space Agency launched Philae, mounted on an Ariane 5 rocket, over a decade ago. The rocket traveled to Comet 67/P, …

Is Big Data the Next Big Step for Health Care?

As the force that is “Big Data” revolutionizes everything from government to grocery stores, it presents huge potential for the healthcare sector to study the massive amount of healthcare data that grows each day. Many industries have already taken advantage of the power of big data, such as research, politics, and the private sector, and as private and public initiatives …

ISIS and Chemical Weapons Disarmament: The Political Necessity of Technological Progress

The issue of chemical weaponry, since its inception during the First World War, has increasingly become a political concern. The Assad regime’s August 2013 use of nerve gas against civilians remains fresh in international memory, as does the political confrontation that followed. In July 2014, the issues of weapons storage and disarmament gained further attention when the Iraqi government confirmed …

Exploring Emergent Technology: Memory Augmentation Implants

What is a memory augmentation implant? Memory augmentation implants, currently in the early stages of research and development, are a type of neural prosthesis: a technological extension of the nervous system that seeks to restore lost function, usually due to disease or injury, or to supplement normal function [1]. Memory augmentation implants can be placed within the brain and function …

Ethical Concerns Associated with the Pre-Implementation Screening Process

In 1992, Dr. Alan H. Handyside was able to successfully test a fertilized embryo for cystic fibrosis before implanting the embryo back into the mother [1]. First, Dr. Handyside extracted multiple eggs and sperm, fertilized the eggs, and allowed the embryos to develop in the lab for a few days, part of the process of in vitro fertilization that is …