I The case of Molly Nash (Denver Post, 12/14/2002)

 

Molly was born to Lisa and Jack Nash 8 years ago.

 

Molly was born with Fanconi anemia, a rare and fatal disease, treatable only by a blood transfusion from a siblingís umbilical cord.

 

Lisa and Jack, using in vitro fertilization, created twelve embryos. By genetic screening, it was determined that two had Franconiís and were discarded. One of the remaining ten was a tissue match to Molly, and eventually became Adam Nash, now age 2. It is not clear what happened to the other nine.embryos.

 

Molly was treated and instead of dying by age 7 is expected to have a relatively normal life.

 

Discuss the science and ethics that apply to this case.

 

 

II The case of Jorge Morales (Readerís Digest, Jan 2003)

 

Jorge was born 3 months prematurely on Dec 25th to Marisa and Nestor Morales.

 

At birth he was the size of a quart of milk, weighing 1# 8 oz. He had multiple defects. Two weeks after birth additional defects were found.

 

Between six and nine surgeries would be required, with varying degrees of risk, with the probability of impaired vision, mental retardation and cerebral palsy very high.

 

Marisa and Nestor decided against heroics. Jorge died peaceably, in his motherís arms, on January 18.

 

Discuss the science and ethics in this case