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CONTENTS Issue #258
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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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Genetic profiling of babies is not coming soon
17 May 2004 - by Juliet Tizzard
We report this week on a public meeting discussing the question of whether, in the future, all babies should be genetically profiled at birth. The government's genetics watchdog, the Human Genetics Commission met with researchers in Bristol to discuss the feasibility of such a programme, as well as its possible... [Read More]
Natallie Evans: another reason to review the HFE Act
21 May 2004 - by Muiris Lyons
Natallie Evans was diagnosed with a pre-cancerous ovarian condition and had to undergo surgery to have her ovaries removed. Before this happened, she underwent IVF treatment from which six embryos were created and are in frozen storage. She wants to use the embryos as she is desperate to have a... [Read More]
Genetics watchdog looks at newborn profiling
17 May 2004 - by BioNews
The UK's Human Genetics Commission (HGC) has considered the issues surrounding the testing and storing of DNA samples from all newborn babies, at a meeting held in Bristol last week. The event was a follow-up to a government commitment to look at genetic profiling of newborns, made in the White... [Read More]
First baby from frozen egg in China
17 May 2004 - by BioNews
China's first IVF baby to be conceived using a frozen human egg was born at the end of April this year. Newspapers in the country have heralded the birth as the 'arrival of a technology that was introduced abroad only three years ago'. The first UK birth following the use... [Read More]
Call for UK genetic discrimination laws
17 May 2004 - by BioNews
Nobel Laureate Sir John Sulston has called for new UK legislation to prevent genetic discrimination. The former head of the Sanger genome sequencing centre in Cambridge presented his proposals to the Human Genetics Commission (HGC) last week. Sulston, a member of the HGC, told the Guardian newspaper that 'the main... [Read More]
Bush responds to Congress stem cell letter
17 May 2004 - by BioNews
The Bush administration has responded to a letter sent from Congress members to the president earlier this month, which called for a relaxation of federal restrictions on embryonic stem (ES) cell research. The letter, signed by 206 representatives, called for the president to change his policy, which has been in... [Read More]
Embryo test could increase IVF success rate
17 May 2004 - by BioNews
A new test to identify embryos most likely to result in a pregnancy could double the success rate of IVF, US researchers claim. Researchers at the Sher Institutes for Reproductive Medicine say the new test, which samples the embryo growth fluid, could cut the number of embryos used in fertility... [Read More]
US states making stem cell policies
17 May 2004 - by BioNews
Two US states have made further moves to regulate or promote embryonic stem (ES) cell research. In New Jersey last Wednesday, state Governor James McGreevey signed a bill to create the first state-funded ES cell research centre. And, on the same day, the Health and Welfare Committee of the Louisiana... [Read More]
Dads deliver more than DNA
17 May 2004 - by BioNews
Sperm contribute paternal DNA when they fertilise an egg - but they also deliver some messenger RNA (mRNA), US researchers say. The unexpected finding means that sperm could play a greater role in early development than previously thought, say the scientists, who reported their results in the journal Nature. The research... [Read More]
Frozen sperm as good as fresh
17 May 2004 - by BioNews
A review of IVF procedures undertaken in the last ten years at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, US, has shown that it makes no difference to success rates whether frozen or fresh sperm is used. The results of the study were presented last week at the Annual Scientific Meeting of... [Read More]
Singapore reduces cloning penalties
17 May 2004 - by BioNews
The Health Ministry of Singapore has amended draft legislation to reduce the criminal sanctions proposed for cloning a human being. The proposed jail term for human reproductive cloning has been reduced from 10 years to five years, following complaints from national scientists. Several other countries have already passed national legislation... [Read More]

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