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CONTENTS Issue #268
COMMENT
Saviour siblings: have we slipped down the slope?
Embryo freezing: is it safe?
NEWS DIGEST
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Saviour siblings: have we slipped down the slope?
26 July 2004 - by Juliet Tizzard
The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has announced a relaxation of the rules surrounding PGD and tissue typing, otherwise known as saviour siblings treatment. Predictably, the decision prompted a rash of media comment. But, perhaps unpredictably, nearly all the comment was positive and in support of the HFEA's decision... [Read More]
Embryo freezing: is it safe?
2 August 2004 - by Dr Maureen Wood
Embryo freezing is generally seen as a routine part of IVF and ICSI treatment. It offers many benefits, not least the fact that embryos left over from a fresh cycle can be stored for future use. This has implications for the patient's health and wellbeing - it avoids unnecessary gonadotrophin stimulation... [Read More]
Mothers counteract genetic aggression risk
22 July 2004 - by BioNews
Good mothering can cancel out a genetic predisposition to aggressive behaviour in monkeys, a new US study suggests. Scientists at the National Institutes of Health say that a nurturing environment can curb antisocial behaviour in rhesus monkeys born with low levels of certain brain chemicals. Their findings, which will be... [Read More]
Gene clue to cot death
22 July 2004 - by BioNews
US scientists have uncovered the genetic basis of a form of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) - or 'cot death' - associated with testes abnormalities. Team leader Dietrich Stephan says the findings, which will appear in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, could help save some babies at risk of... [Read More]
HFEA allow PGD for HLA tissue typing
22 July 2004 - by BioNews
The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has decided that no distinction should be between the cases of the Hashmi family and the Whitaker family: that preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) for the sole purpose of tissue typing should be allowed. The news gives hope to many families who may now... [Read More]
Twin study sheds light on causes of Alzheimer's disease
23 July 2004 - by BioNews
Environmental and genetic factors are both important triggers in the development of late-onset Alzheimer's disease (AD), a new US study of twins confirms. Researchers at Duke University Medical Centre presented their research, carried out on more than 200 male twins who served during World War II, at the recent International... [Read More]
Repeats in the Book of Life may affect disease
23 July 2004 - by BioNews
A research team from Cold Spring Harbour Laboratory has found a surprising degree of variation in repeated regions of the human genome. The discovery was made whilst researchers were looking for repeated DNA that might cause cancer, using a new laboratory technique. The results, published this week in the journal... [Read More]
'Sperm idol' reality TV show?
26 July 2004 - by BioNews
An independent television production company, based in the UK, has announced that it is in the process of developing a reality television in which men compete in a 'sperm race' to get a childless woman pregnant. The company - Brighter Pictures - is owned by Endemol, the company that produces Big Brother... [Read More]
Improved gene therapy for muscles
26 July 2004 - by BioNews
Researchers have overcome one of the major hurdles in using gene therapy to treat muscle diseases: delivery of the gene to muscles throughout the body. The study, to be published in the journal Nature Medicine next month, is further progress towards treating diseases such as Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), which... [Read More]
HFEA to become RAFT
26 July 2004 - by BioNews
The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) is to merge with the proposed Human Tissue Authority (HTA) to become the Regulatory Authority for Fertility and Tissue (RAFT). The amalgamation of these two bodies is part of the Department of Health's (DoH) review of Arm's Length Bodies (ALB), which the Health... [Read More]

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