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in philosophy, a branch of ethicsethics,
in philosophy, the study and evaluation of human conduct in the light of moral principles. Moral principles may be viewed either as the standard of conduct that individuals have constructed for themselves or as the body of obligations and duties that a particular society
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 concerned with issues surrounding health care and the biological sciences. These issues include the morality of abortionabortion,
expulsion of the products of conception before the embryo or fetus is viable. Any interruption of human pregnancy prior to the 28th week is known as abortion. The term spontaneous abortion, or miscarriage, is used to signify delivery of a nonviable embryo or fetus due
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, euthanasiaeuthanasia
, either painlessly putting to death or failing to prevent death from natural causes in cases of terminal illness or irreversible coma. The term comes from the Greek expression for "good death.
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, in vitro fertilizationin vitro fertilization
(IVF), technique for conception of a human embryo outside the mother's body. Several ova, or eggs, are removed from the mother's body and placed in special laboratory culture dishes (Petri dishes); sperm from the father are then added, or in many cases a
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, and organ transplants (see transplantation, medicaltransplantation, medical,
surgical procedure by which a tissue or organ is removed and replaced by a corresponding part, usually from another part of the body or from another individual.
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). In the 1970s bioethics emerged as a discipline with its own experts, often professional philosophers, who developed university courses on the subject. Many hospitals now employ experts on bioethics to advise on such issues as how to treat terminally ill patients and to allocate limited resources. Advances in health care, the development of genetic testinggenetic testing,
medical screening for genetic disorders, by examining either a person's DNA directly or a person's biochemistry or chromosomes for indirect evidence. Testing may be done to identify a genetic disorder a person has, whether the disorder is already evident or not,
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 and screening, and the new research in genetic engineeringgenetic engineering,
the use of various methods to manipulate the DNA (genetic material) of cells to change hereditary traits or produce biological products. The techniques include the use of hybridomas (hybrids of rapidly multiplying cancer cells and of cells that make a
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, including gene therapygene therapy,
the use of genes and the techniques of genetic engineering in the treatment of a genetic disorder or chronic disease. There are many techniques of gene therapy, all of them still in experimental stages.
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, have also given rise to questions in bioethics.


See W. T. Reich, ed., Encyclopedia of Bioethics (4 vol., 1978); H. T. Engelhardt, The Foundations of Bioethics (1986); R. Macklin, Mortal Choices: Bioethics in Today's World (1987).


A discipline concerned with the application of ethics to biological problems, especially in the field of medicine.
References in periodicals archive ?
The two-day conference, also sponsored by Qatar National Research Fund, Faculty of Islamic Studies, and Leiden University of the Netherlands, aims to create an opportunity for direct conversation between those working on bioethics in the West and in the Islamic world.
Part of doing this included embedding medical humanities and bioethics postdoctoral fellows in the lab, per the suggestion of Laurie Zoloth.
While philosophers might wish to lay claim to the field of bioethics as a subfield of ethics, this is not how it is seen by many non-philosophers.
I look forward to continuing the Bioethics Institute's excellent track record of educating graduate students and healthcare professionals in the moral and ethical issues they face in their careers," Dell'Oro said.
Bioethics addresses risk by designing "fair" institutions.
Evans describes this as the "progress assumption" of bioethics that excludes any ethical (irrational, emotional) debate of whatever is labeled as technology.
The goal of bioethics should not simply be to solve technical problems involving specific procedures via the issuance of rules, but "concern for the moral health of our entire community.
In the long run, human cloning is a sideshow," says Arthur Caplan of the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
The federal government once had an effective mechanism in place--a national commission--to address public bioethics, but the Reagan and Bush administrations allowed the mechanism to languish.
com/research/b6e997/a_companion_to_bio) has announced the addition of John Wiley and Sons Ltd's new report "A Companion to Bioethics, 2nd Edition" to their offering.
KUWAIT, May 16 (KUNA) -- The Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KIRS) and Kuwait National Commission for UNESCO (KNC UNESCO) will host a workshop on bioethics and technology on Sunday.