Last year with all the breakthroughs in iPS cell research, I thought that would be the end of the human cloning debate. Seems there is finally a crack in the wall as it relates to human-animal hybrid research (pursued largely because of the lack of human eggs, the scientist uses animal eggs).
While three licenses have been granted in the U.K. to conduct human-animal hybrid research, only two of the agencies have applied for funding. And both were turned down.
This from the Guardian:
“Two groups, at King’s College London and Newcastle University, have had grant applications to create hybrid embryos turned down, forcing the scientists to consider putting the research on hold. Stephen Minger, who leads the team at King’s, was seeking support for a project to create human stem cells that carry the genetic traits of neurodegenerative diseases.”
“Since the furore broke, however, scientists have developed a cheap and powerful new technique in which adult skin cells are reprogrammed to create cells that are almost identical to stem cells. Researchers have already used the technique to make so-called induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells for patients with diabetes, muscular dystrophy and Down’s syndrome. The work was named scientific breakthrough of the year by the prestigious US journal Science last year.”
Hopefully President-elect will get the memo on this and reconsider his promise to use his power through executive order to further fund embryonic stem cell research!
- Jennifer Lahl, MA, BSN, RN, is founder and president of The Center for Bioethics and Culture Network. Lahl couples her 25 years of experience as a pediatric critical care nurse, a hospital administrator, and a senior-level nursing manager with a deep passion to speak for those who have no voice. Lahl’s writings have appeared in various publications including Cambridge University Press, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Dallas Morning News, and the American Journal of Bioethics. As a field expert, she is routinely interviewed on radio and television including ABC, CBS, PBS, and NPR. She is also called upon to speak alongside lawmakers and members of the scientific community, even being invited to speak to members of the European Parliament in Brussels to address issues of egg trafficking; she has three times addressed the United Nations during the Commission on the Status of Women on egg and womb trafficking.