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True and false concerns about neuroenhancement: a response to ‘Neuroenhancers, addiction and research ethics’, by D M Shaw


In his critical comment on our paper in this journal, Shaw argues that ‘false assumptions’ which we have criticised are in fact correct (‘Neuroenhancers, addiction and research ethics’). He suggests that the risk of addiction to neuroenhancers may not be relevant, and that safety and research in regard to neuroenhancement do not pose unique ethical problems. Here, we demonstrate that Shaw ignores key empirical research results, trivialises addiction, commits logical errors, confuses addictions and passions, argues on a speculative basis, and fails to distinguish the specific ethical conditions of clinical research from those relevant for research in healthy volunteers. Therefore, Shaw's criticism cannot convince.

  • Enhancement
  • Neuroethics
  • Research Ethics

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