Virtue In Vitro: Virtue Ethics as an Alternative to Questions of Moral Status

  • Justin Ho
  • Garret Merriam
Part of the Philosophy and Medicine book series (PHME, volume 102)


If we step back and examine this volume as a whole, we see that all of the authors have attempted to provide an overview of some of the different worldviews, which have given rise to the immense controversy surrounding the use of human embryonic stem cells in research. In addition, some have also tried to offer or defend a framework that they hope will give us more substantive guidance regarding these issues (namely, Fan and Yu, McKenny, and Song). However, only Brenda Almond, in “Using and Misusing Embryos, the Ethical Debates,” has tried to answer the question of whether it is permissible to use embryos for stem-cell research by appealing to what she seems to think are moral intuitions that all informed, rational beings are likely to share, while trying to avoid many of the problems that other theories of moral status encounter.


Human Nature Regenerative Medicine Moral Status Neural Development Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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  1. Almond, B. (2008). ‘Using Embryos for Research: The Ethical Debate,’ in King-Tak Ip (Ed.), The Bioethics of Regenerative Medicine, Springer, Dordrecht, The Netherlands.Google Scholar
  2. Munthie, C. (2001). ‘Divisibility and the Moral Status of Embryos,’ Bioethics, 15, 382–397.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Justin Ho
    • 1
  • Garret Merriam
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyRice UniversityHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of Southern IndianaEvanvilleUSA

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