Green light for hybrid research
Regulators have given scientists the green light to create human-animal embryos for research.
The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority granted permission after a consultation showed the public were "at ease" with the idea.
Experts said it was vital for research into life-threatening diseases.
Two centres, King's College London and Newcastle University, will now be able to begin their work under one-year research licences.
Any other centres wishing to do similar work will have to apply to the HFEA for permission, which will make a decision on a case by case basis.
Scientists want to create hybrid embryos by merging human cells with animal eggs in a bid to extract stem cells. The embryos would then be destroyed within 14 days.
The cells form the basic building blocks of the body and have the potential to become any tissue, making them essential for research.
At the moment, scientists have to rely on human eggs left over from fertility treatment, but they are in short supply and are not always good quality.
Critics say they are repulsed by the idea and there must be no creation of an animal-human hybrid.
They say it is tampering with nature and is unethical.
It is already illegal to implant human-animal embryos in the womb or bring them to term.
Dr Stephen Minger and colleagues at King's College London want to create hybrids to study diseases known to have genetic causes - such as Alzheimer's disease, spinal muscular atrophy and Parkinson's disease.
And Lyle Armstrong's team at Newcastle University are hoping to use the technique to help understand how stem cells develop into different tissues in the body.
In the distant future this information may lead to scientists to be able to grow new tissues in the laboratory.
Dr Armstrong said: "Now that we have the licence we can start work as soon as possible.
"We have already done a lot of the work by transferring animal cells into cow eggs so we hope to make rapid progress."
John Smeaton, national director of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC), said: "The HFEA decision represents a disastrous setback for human dignity in Britain.
"The deliberate blurring of the boundaries between humans and other species is wrong and strikes at the heart of what makes us human."
Article from: Green light for hybrid research
Why are ministers opposed to hybrids?
Chimera embryos have right to life, say bishops
Science's new blend mixes man and beast
Human Cells + Animal Cells = ?
Why Embryonic Stem Cell Research? It's About Human Engineering, Not Ending Disease
Now scientists create a sheep that's 15% human
Hybrid embryos could be created within months
Dolly the Sheep Creator Knighted
EU gives green light for cloned food to go on sale in UK shops
Cloned food on verge of FDA's OK
Burgers from cloned animals 'by 2010'
Latest News from our Front Page
41% of Americans Support Criminalizing "Hate Speech"
The following are from a recent poll about what some are calling on for "hate speech"
1. Support for Hate Crimes Legislation
Do you support or oppose the federal law that requires increased penalties for hate crimes committed on the basis of the actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, ethnicity, or gender of any person?
2. Support for Expanding Hate Crimes
FBI Admits No Major Cases Cracked with Patriot Act Snooping Powers
FBI agents can’t point to any major terrorism cases they’ve cracked thanks to the key snooping powers in the Patriot Act, the Justice Department’s inspector general said in a report Thursday that could complicate efforts to keep key parts of the law operating.
Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz said that between 2004 and 2009, the FBI tripled its use of bulk ...
Sweetener Stevia Was Once Hailed As An Anti-Fertility Agent for Population Reduction
Maybe it's not so sweet now... If you've thought stevia, the natural alternative to sugar and artificial sweetners with aspartame, et al., is too good to be true, there may be a catch. Check out this textbook written in 1970 by Paul and Anne Ehrlich, the precursor to the textbook Ecoscience they wrote with Obama Science Czar John P. Holdren ...
TPP Aproved: Senate Republicans Give Obama New Powers - Details Remain 'Classified'
President Obama won a big victory for his trade agenda Friday with the Senate’s approval of fast-track legislation that could make it easier for him to complete a wide-ranging trade deal that would include 11 Pacific Rim nations.
A coalition of 48 Senate Republicans and 14 Democrats voted for Trade Promotion Authority late Friday, sending the legislation to a difficult fight ...
Circumcision battle: Mom seeks release from jail after federal lawsuit is dismissed
West Boynton mother on Wednesday gave up trying to get a federal judge to stop her 4 1/2-year-old son from being circumcised as his father wishes — a battle that also led to her arrest May 14 on a state court warrant.
An attorney for Heather Hironimus, who lost similar legal challenges in two state courts, notified U.S. District Judge Kenneth ...
|More News » |