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Issue 523 (01 September 2009)

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Welcome to BioNews by email, published by the Progress Educational Trust, providing you with news, comment and reviews on genetics, assisted conception, embryo/stem cell research and related areas. 

Visit the BioNews website at where you can subscribe for free to receive BioNews by email in one of three formats, and search the archive of more than 6,000 articles.


Is cross-border reproductive care a problem, and for whom?
01 September 2009 - by Dr Francoise Shenfield
As a clinician based in the UK, one cannot fail to be aware that some patients seek fertility treatments abroad. Until now we only had newspaper headlines or anecdotal evidence, but having presented the results of the first European study in Amsterdam at the annual ESHRE conference (1), we may now base our reflections on some facts, even if selected by the voluntary nature of participating colleagues and centres abroad.... [Read More]
Why the controversy over intergenerational gamete donation?
01 September 2009 - by Dr Jennifer Speirs
Professor Lisa Jardine, the chair of the UK's Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA), has called for a fresh debate on two allegedly controversial aspects of gamete donation, namely the provision of gametes to a known relative of a different generation, and the provision of semen by a man to his sister if she is using a donated egg... [Read More]

News Digest

Monkey research points to cure for inherited mitochondrial diseases
01 September 2009 - by Adam Fletcher
A variation of somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT), reported online in the journal Nature, could be used in humans to allow women with a certain group of incurable inherited conditions - known as mitochondrial disorders - to have children without passing on the condition. Because the technique, developed by Dr Shoukhrat Mitalipov and team from the Orgeon National Primate Research Centre, US, involves the the sperm from one monkey and two eggs from different monkeys... [Read More]
Childhood leukaemia genes found
01 September 2009 - by Lorna Stewart
Research published earlier this month in Nature Genetics is the first to show that there is a genetic component to acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL), the most common form of childhood cancer. [Read More]
British couples can choose baby's sex in US clinic
01 September 2009 - by Sarah Pritchard
A fertility clinic in the USA has revealed that it provides sex selection to many British couples who pay large amounts of money to travel and receive the service.... [Read More]
Panel calls for state-funded IVF in Ontario
01 September 2009 - by Antony Blackburn-Starza
Leading fertility and adoption experts have called upon the Canadian government to fund three cycles of IVF for women under 42 in the state of Ontario. The Ontario Expert Panel on Fertility and Adoption, which released its report last week, recommended the province should fund IVF as well as including proposals to reform the adoption system.... [Read More]
Recent advances in genomics herald arrival of 'personalised healthcare'
01 September 2009 - by Ailsa Stevens
BioNews reporting from the British Society for Human Genetics (BSHG) annual conference in Warwick: Recent technological advances promise to make some of the hopes raised by the completion of the Human Genome Project a reality, Professor John Burn and Dr Brent Zanke told delegates at the annual meeting of the British Society for Human Genetics (BSHG), held at the University of York from 31st August – 2nd September.... [Read More]
NHS labs may be ill-prepared to deal with patents on genetic tests
01 September 2009 - by Ailsa Stevens
BioNews reporting from the British Society for Human Genetics annual conference in Warwick:... [Read More]
Disgraced Korean scientist faces four years in prison
01 September 2009 - by Nishat Hyder
Disgraced scientist, Hwang Woo-suk found last Monday that he faces a possible four year jail term for alleged embezzlement, and the violation of Korean bioethics law.... [Read More]




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