Recently, the media has been flooded with the news regarding an Artificial Womb called EctoLife, proposed by Hashem Al-Ghaili. It is proposed that it can incubate up to 30000 babies annually, and the same number of families would get a chance to become true biological parents.
The most prominent advantage to parents is the freedom to create the embryo genetically of their choice before it is placed in an artificial birth canal. The selection of strength, intelligence, height, hair color, eye color, etc., to avoid genetic illnesses would give it a marked edge over all the assisted conception methods or conceiving naturally.
Artificial wombs would replicate the conditions found in a woman’s uterus in a sterile environment with built-in AI-based sensors that track vital indicators such as heart rate, oxygenation saturation, temperature, breathing, and blood pressure. These AI Systems would also monitor physical characteristics and detect any possible genetic anomalies if they developed even after the strict pre-implantation screening.
Seemingly, EctoLife/Artificial Womb is an exciting technology that envisages a controversial but promising way that would aid thousands of people who have been deprived of a child to get biological parenthood. This technology would be a blessing to all showbiz and modeling industry women who do not want to conceive naturally or disfigure their bodies due to scars of Caesarean Sections (C-Sections) or stretch marks over their bellies that can harm their careers. This helps women avoid morning sickness or gestational hypertension, or pregnancy/gestational diabetes, as well as the discomfort of labor and delivery.
These artificial womb facilities would eliminate hereditary diseases by providing an inhuman environment. This technology will also decrease maternal mortality due to complications due to pregnancy, which counts 300,000 at present date according to World Health Organization (WHO). The project is also primarily intended to help women whose uterus was removed due to medical issues, such as cancer. Also, the technology is planned to be launched in countries with low birth rates.
This raises serious ethical concerns regarding the spirit of parenthood that would affect how people would behave with children born through this technology.
Will this technology ever become a reality?
The simple answer to this question is Yes. Still, the implementation challenges would be far more significant than its theory proposal. The technology is not new, but its application to humans is unique and surprising.
The world where the rising campaigns to control births is getting their roots deeper and deeper. Birth control and population control advocates are also worried about the boom of the population when there are already crises and inflation.
What’s your opinion in this regard? Please do comment.