Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Artificial Wombs - Alternative to Abortions?

Anonymous
Posted by Anonymous
  • 60 Replies
Theres an article on buzzle.com about artificial wombs that I was reading. (my phone isn't letting me copy and paste the link so if someone can find it and post it, that'd be great!). But apparently scientists are trying to make these artificial wombs that will be able to hold a baby full term outside of the human body. They've done tests with this in the past on goats and mice but several of the goats died and the ones who made it full term had several issues. I'm not sure how I feel about this! Share your thoughs please! -- Article added in comments by Sassy762 (:
Posted by Anonymous on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:46 PM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-10):
MrsDavidB25
by Stacey on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:47 PM

 Who would use this? People who have trouble conceiving or carrying a child I am guessing?

thePBandJmom
by Gold Member on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:48 PM

It might be possible to create an environment that can sustain a baby, but I think they would have emotional damage. Human beings just aren't meant to grow that way.

Sassy762
by CAFE SASSY HBIC on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:48 PM

THIS ONE???

Artificial Womb
Artificial womb, a concept that is being toyed with many scientists, researchers as well as doctors around the world. Will womb that is artificial help a woman who cannot conceive naturally or is it going to take away the gift of reproduction from the female race? Let's find out by reading through the following article.



Recently, I have read a lot about the concept of artificial womb in newspapers and magazines. A science fiction novel 'Brave New World' by Aldous Huxley, spoke about a device that helped supporting the growth of a human embryo. The Grammy Awards in February came with a shocking surprise by none other than Lady Gaga. She crawled out of a fake womb before her act on the number, 'Born This Way'. An unnatural womb. The very thought of it divides my thoughts to trail on two separate paths. Is it a hopeful weapon for women who are just considered as living, breeding reproduction machines by their male counter paths? Or is it a method against nature, taking away the power of birth from a woman?

What is an Artificial Womb?
It is a theoretical device that will help grow an embryo or fetus extra-corporeally. This means, it will grow outside the body of the female in an artificial device that functions as womb. Many researchers are toying with this idea after the success of in vitro fertilization (IVF). The successful birth of Louise Joy Brown in 1978 in England made it as the headlines of newspapers. She was called the 'Super Babe' to be born with the help of in vitro fertilization. Since her birth, there have been around 4 million babies conceived with the help of IVF. This method involves fertilization of the egg and sperm outside the womb. Once the embryo is developed, it is placed back into the woman's womb to grow and develop into a baby.

Apart from IVF, there is another easy way to conceive a child. This includes artificial insemination where sperms are placed directly inside the woman's womb. This helps in increasing the chances of fertilization and conceiving a baby. If none of these methods are successful, couples can even opt for a surrogate mother, who will carry the child to term and hand over the baby to the waiting and hopeful couple. However, there is one basic requirement for conceiving a baby common to all these methods. This common link is the mother's womb, that is, the uterus. Without the uterus, an embryo cannot develop, grow and take form of a human baby. There are many medical experts and masters of science who wish to make do with this common link. 

These are supposed to be self-contained synthetic structures. They are made to replicate the conditions in a woman's uterus. It will contain a nutrition and oxygen supplier. It will also be connected to a waste disposer. This will help imitate the umbilical cord that maintains the blood flow between the mother and fetus. Thus, the fetus receives nutrition to grow, oxygen to survive as well as get waste thrown out of its system. This fetus is placed in an artificial placenta that is filled in the self-contained synthetic wombs. This artificial placenta will be engineered from endometrial cells that are removed from a human donor and grown artificially. These cells will form a tissue that will then be further engineered to form the shape of a natural uterus. In this tissue, the human embryo will be implanted and allowed to grow. The synthetic womb will be connected to an incubator, that is artificial amniotic sac. This helps the embryo or fetus to move freely at an optimum temperature. The natural amniotic fluid is replaced by Lactated Ringer's solution.

Implications
As you can see, if created, the womb will mimic the natural mother's womb to the best of its ability. Scientists have gone forward and conducted experiments to prove their theory holds water. In 2000, at the Juntendo University in Tokyo, one such experiment was conducted. They filled an acrylic box with a liquid similar to amniotic fluid. They then used an embryo of a goat that was removed after 4 months of normal gestation through a cesarean section. This goat fetus was then placed in the artificial chamber with the umbilical cord connected to the artificial placenta. Most of these goat embryos died, some survived for a few weeks and reached a full term. However, the goat formed had lung problems and other deformities. Professor Hung-Ching Liu at Cornell University's Center for Reproductive Medicine, too was successful in growing a mouse embryo to almost a full term.

But, why would one want to grow the embryo outside the womb? There are many women with a damaged womb or severe infertility problems who would like to get pregnant. These woman maybe benefited by an artificial womb that helps carry her baby for a full term. Thus, reducing the chances of a surrogate mother refusing to let go of the child born. These synthetic wombs may even help career oriented women, who cannot afford any kind of delay or changes in their body. It may even help protect the baby from the ill effects of abuse if the mother is found to be an alcoholic, drug addicted, chain smoker or suffers from a transmissible disease. This will be helpful to women suffering from domestic violence to protect their baby from getting hurt. Some believe it may help a woman terminate her pregnancy, that is, undergo an abortion, without having to kill the growing fetus.

But, is this such a necessity? Many religious beliefs as well as people are against abortion. Killing a fetus is considered like murdering another human being. So, when does life begin is a big question that still goes unanswered. Does life start when the embryo stops twinning? Or does life begin with the first heartbeat in the fetus? One can also consider the first neural development of the fetus as the beginning of life. Some believe life starts after the baby takes his/her first breath once outside the mother's womb. Maybe at what point life starts does not matter in this case. This man-made structure is actually made to support life outside the warm, protection of a mother's womb. It may become a solace for any fetus, whose mother cannot or does not want to care for it. Instead of terminating the pregnancy, the mother can donate the fetus to a state-run facility. This unborn child can be adopted by couples who are in need of a child.

But, what if the mother who creates life no longer wants the child? What if no one comes forward to adopt this child grown in a synthetic womb? The number of orphans would be on a rise and who will take care of their needs will turn into a debatable question. Suppose, the dream comes to fruition and ectogenesis is possible for human race. Will it take away the joy of motherhood from a woman? Men who are superfluous to the act of reproduction will no longer care for the needs of the woman they had 'so-called' impregnated. This will also turn women superfluous to the act of reproduction. Raising a child right from conception as long as possible is what makes humans different from animals. Once ectogenesis becomes possible, things like contraception will become absolute.

The human race has always loved to play God. This is the reason, humans are forever searching for new ways to create life. Women have been bestowed the power to give birth to life. Before giving up this power to a mechanical device, think of all the moral and ethical implications it may have. Although the idea is quite tempting, would you as a woman like to grow your own child in a machine rather than in your own womb? Are you ready to give up the joy and experience of bonding with your baby in the womb? Give it a thought, as this idea still has a little time before it turns into a reality.
By Batul Nafisa Baxamusa
Published: June 17, 2011
Read more at Buzzle: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/artificial-womb.html

I'M CLASSY, SASSY WITH A BIT OF SMART ASS THROWN IN PIC

j3st3r
by on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:48 PM

It's a little out there for me, but is probably a better option than a gestational carrier for some folks.

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:49 PM
Yes, and it "might be an alternative to abortions."

Quoting MrsDavidB25:

 Who would use this? People who have trouble conceiving or carrying a child I am guessing?

Devious333
by Ruby Member on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:51 PM
1 mom liked this
If they were successful, I would. I get high BP and pre e so this would be better for me.

Quoting MrsDavidB25:

 Who would use this? People who have trouble conceiving or carrying a child I am guessing?

Posted on CafeMom Mobile
Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:52 PM
1 mom liked this
Yes! Thank you!

Quoting Sassy762:

THIS ONE???

Artificial Womb
Artificial womb, a concept that is being toyed with many scientists, researchers as well as doctors around the world. Will womb that is artificial help a woman who cannot conceive naturally or is it going to take away the gift of reproduction from the female race? Let's find out by reading through the following article.



Recently, I have read a lot about the concept of artificial womb in newspapers and magazines. A science fiction novel 'Brave New World' by Aldous Huxley, spoke about a device that helped supporting the growth of a human embryo. The Grammy Awards in February came with a shocking surprise by none other than Lady Gaga. She crawled out of a fake womb before her act on the number, 'Born This Way'. An unnatural womb. The very thought of it divides my thoughts to trail on two separate paths. Is it a hopeful weapon for women who are just considered as living, breeding reproduction machines by their male counter paths? Or is it a method against nature, taking away the power of birth from a woman?

What is an Artificial Womb?
It is a theoretical device that will help grow an embryo or fetus extra-corporeally. This means, it will grow outside the body of the female in an artificial device that functions as womb. Many researchers are toying with this idea after the success of in vitro fertilization (IVF). The successful birth of Louise Joy Brown in 1978 in England made it as the headlines of newspapers. She was called the 'Super Babe' to be born with the help of in vitro fertilization. Since her birth, there have been around 4 million babies conceived with the help of IVF. This method involves fertilization of the egg and sperm outside the womb. Once the embryo is developed, it is placed back into the woman's womb to grow and develop into a baby.

Apart from IVF, there is another easy way to conceive a child. This includes artificial insemination where sperms are placed directly inside the woman's womb. This helps in increasing the chances of fertilization and conceiving a baby. If none of these methods are successful, couples can even opt for a surrogate mother, who will carry the child to term and hand over the baby to the waiting and hopeful couple. However, there is one basic requirement for conceiving a baby common to all these methods. This common link is the mother's womb, that is, the uterus. Without the uterus, an embryo cannot develop, grow and take form of a human baby. There are many medical experts and masters of science who wish to make do with this common link. 

These are supposed to be self-contained synthetic structures. They are made to replicate the conditions in a woman's uterus. It will contain a nutrition and oxygen supplier. It will also be connected to a waste disposer. This will help imitate the umbilical cord that maintains the blood flow between the mother and fetus. Thus, the fetus receives nutrition to grow, oxygen to survive as well as get waste thrown out of its system. This fetus is placed in an artificial placenta that is filled in the self-contained synthetic wombs. This artificial placenta will be engineered from endometrial cells that are removed from a human donor and grown artificially. These cells will form a tissue that will then be further engineered to form the shape of a natural uterus. In this tissue, the human embryo will be implanted and allowed to grow. The synthetic womb will be connected to an incubator, that is artificial amniotic sac. This helps the embryo or fetus to move freely at an optimum temperature. The natural amniotic fluid is replaced by Lactated Ringer's solution.

Implications
As you can see, if created, the womb will mimic the natural mother's womb to the best of its ability. Scientists have gone forward and conducted experiments to prove their theory holds water. In 2000, at the Juntendo University in Tokyo, one such experiment was conducted. They filled an acrylic box with a liquid similar to amniotic fluid. They then used an embryo of a goat that was removed after 4 months of normal gestation through a cesarean section. This goat fetus was then placed in the artificial chamber with the umbilical cord connected to the artificial placenta. Most of these goat embryos died, some survived for a few weeks and reached a full term. However, the goat formed had lung problems and other deformities. Professor Hung-Ching Liu at Cornell University's Center for Reproductive Medicine, too was successful in growing a mouse embryo to almost a full term.

But, why would one want to grow the embryo outside the womb? There are many women with a damaged womb or severe infertility problems who would like to get pregnant. These woman maybe benefited by an artificial womb that helps carry her baby for a full term. Thus, reducing the chances of a surrogate mother refusing to let go of the child born. These synthetic wombs may even help career oriented women, who cannot afford any kind of delay or changes in their body. It may even help protect the baby from the ill effects of abuse if the mother is found to be an alcoholic, drug addicted, chain smoker or suffers from a transmissible disease. This will be helpful to women suffering from domestic violence to protect their baby from getting hurt. Some believe it may help a woman terminate her pregnancy, that is, undergo an abortion, without having to kill the growing fetus.

But, is this such a necessity? Many religious beliefs as well as people are against abortion. Killing a fetus is considered like murdering another human being. So, when does life begin is a big question that still goes unanswered. Does life start when the embryo stops twinning? Or does life begin with the first heartbeat in the fetus? One can also consider the first neural development of the fetus as the beginning of life. Some believe life starts after the baby takes his/her first breath once outside the mother's womb. Maybe at what point life starts does not matter in this case. This man-made structure is actually made to support life outside the warm, protection of a mother's womb. It may become a solace for any fetus, whose mother cannot or does not want to care for it. Instead of terminating the pregnancy, the mother can donate the fetus to a state-run facility. This unborn child can be adopted by couples who are in need of a child.

But, what if the mother who creates life no longer wants the child? What if no one comes forward to adopt this child grown in a synthetic womb? The number of orphans would be on a rise and who will take care of their needs will turn into a debatable question. Suppose, the dream comes to fruition and ectogenesis is possible for human race. Will it take away the joy of motherhood from a woman? Men who are superfluous to the act of reproduction will no longer care for the needs of the woman they had 'so-called' impregnated. This will also turn women superfluous to the act of reproduction. Raising a child right from conception as long as possible is what makes humans different from animals. Once ectogenesis becomes possible, things like contraception will become absolute.

The human race has always loved to play God. This is the reason, humans are forever searching for new ways to create life. Women have been bestowed the power to give birth to life. Before giving up this power to a mechanical device, think of all the moral and ethical implications it may have. Although the idea is quite tempting, would you as a woman like to grow your own child in a machine rather than in your own womb? Are you ready to give up the joy and experience of bonding with your baby in the womb? Give it a thought, as this idea still has a little time before it turns into a reality.
By Batul Nafisa Baxamusa
Published: June 17, 2011
Read more at Buzzle: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/artificial-womb.html

Stephd710
by Emerald Member on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:53 PM
4 moms liked this

I dont like it.  I think the baby needs something from a human mommy that something artificial cant provide, surrogate or not. 

Anonymous
by Anonymous 2 on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:54 PM
I think it's interesting. I don't have any strong feelings about it though right now.
AnnieGoolaheey
by Mrs. Annie Proffitt on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:54 PM

That's just weird.

Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)