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Issue 619 (08 August 2011)

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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. 

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What the kids really want
08 August 2011 - by Professor Naomi Cahn and Wendy Kramer
The largest study to date of donor-conceived people has just been published in Human Reproduction. Its findings show the need to address two different effects of anonymous donating: first, when should children find out that their parents used donor sperm or eggs; and second, should children ever find out the identity of their donors?... [Read More]
The IVF lottery
08 August 2011 - by Dr Anna Smajdor
In 2007, the world's media reported - with various degrees of shock and disapproval - on a Big Brother-style TV programme being created in Holland. This was Big Brother with a bizarre twist: instead of a cash prize and a moment of minor celebrity, the winner would get ... a kidney. Fast forward to 2011. A similar media outcry has been provoked by the announcement by fertility charity To Hatch of a lottery where the prize is - not cash; not a kidney, but... fertility treatment... [Read More]

News Digest

Dead father granted parenthood in surrogacy case
08 August 2011 - by Antony Blackburn-Starza
The UK's High Court has awarded legal parenthood to a deceased father of a child born through a surrogacy arrangement in India.... [Read More]
Genetic flaw leaves no trace – mutation causing a lack of fingerprints identified
08 August 2011 - by Suzanne Elvidge
Imagine getting to immigration and struggling to get into a country, not because you don't have a passport or legal status, but because you have no fingerprints. People with adermatoglyphia, also known as 'immigration delay disease', have missing fingerprints from birth, and have reduced levels of sweat glands in their skin. Researchers now think they have isolated the genetic mutation behind this rare disorder.... [Read More]
Do Europeans share King Tut's DNA?
08 August 2011 - by Dr Rosie Gilchrist
King Tutankhamun shares ancestors with more than 50 percent of Western European men, according to a personal genomics company in Switzerland.... [Read More]
Artificial sperm made from stem cells
08 August 2011 - by Dr Lux Fatimathas
Scientists in Japan have successfully generated viable sperm cells from embryonic stem cells in mice. The sperm cells were able to fertilise eggs and for the first time this produced healthy, fertile offspring... [Read More]
$1.1 million more funding for multiple sclerosis trial in Bristol
08 August 2011 - by Dr Rebecca Hill
More than £600,000 has been donated to the Frenchay Hospital in Bristol for research into the use of stem cells as a treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS).... [Read More]
Genetic mystery solved as the first Briton has their whole genome sequenced
08 August 2011 - by Dr Jay Stone
Four-year-old Katie Warner from Oxford has become the first person in Britain to have her whole genome sequenced in order to locate the mutation that causes her skull abnormality... [Read More]
NHS may struggle to cope with personalised medicine
08 August 2011 - by Dr Kimberley Bryon-Dodd
The NHS is 'unprepared' to deal with personalised medicine in the clinic, according to Sir John Bell - the UK Government's chief genetics advisor - during an interview with the Times. His comments come as a four-year-old girl last week became Britain's first person to have a rare genetic disease identified through DNA sequencing... [Read More]
Genetic differences will help distinguish stomach cancers
08 August 2011 - by Sarah Pritchard
Genetic differences between two types of stomach cancer could help doctors select the most effective treatment for a patient's tumour, say Singapore researchers. The research team used a new, better method of classifying tumours to distinguish 'diffuse' from 'intestinal' tumours.... [Read More]
Woman looking to make a baby seeks ideal sperm sample
08 August 2011 - by Julianna Photopoulos
The London Sperm Bank (LSB) is to launch an online 'dating agency-style' catalogue listing the appearance, physique and personalities of its sperm donors... [Read More]


Event Review: The Age of Personalised Medicine - Genes, Privacy and Discrimination
08 August 2011 - by Dr Rebecca Hill
'The age of personalised medicine: genes, privacy and discrimination?' was the last in BioCentre's 2010/2011 symposium series 'Revolution, Regulation and Responsibilities', and promised to 'appraise current developments and consider the current legal and regulatory position for their use before taking time to reflect and assess the future impact on society'... [Read More]



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