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CONTENTS Issue #274
COMMENT
Future looking brighter for 'saviour siblings'
NEWS DIGEST
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Future looking brighter for 'saviour siblings'
6 September 2004 - by Dr Kirsty Horsey
Today we report that the UK's Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has decided to allow Joe and Julie Fletcher to conceive a so-called 'saviour sibling' for their sick son, Joshua. Those that have followed this debate over the past few years will know that the Fletchers are not the... [Read More]
Stem cells in the US: political news
3 September 2004 - by BioNews
Bill Gates, the Microsoft chairman, has boosted a California ballot proposition that would provide $3 billion in funding for embryonic stem (ES) cell research within the state, by donating $400,000 in support of a 'yes' vote. The bill, known as proposition 71, will be voted on in state elections on... [Read More]
Patient group awarded gene patent
3 September 2004 - by BioNews
A patient support group has been awarded a landmark patent, on the gene involved in the disorder pseudoxanthoma elasticum (PXE). The US Patent and Trademark Office has recognised the head of PXE International, Sharon Terry, as one of five co-inventors on a patent issued on 24 August. Terry, who has... [Read More]
Singapore bans reproductive cloning
3 September 2004 - by BioNews
Singapore has passed a law banning human reproductive cloning, while allowing the practice of cloning human embryos for stem cell research purposes to continue. Anyone who breaches the provisions set in the Human Cloning and Other Prohibited Practices Act will face 10 years in prison for what has been called... [Read More]
Fletchers given 'saviour sibling' go-ahead
6 September 2004 - by BioNews
The licensing committee of the UK's Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) met today to rule whether a couple can create a 'saviour sibling' to treat their seriously ill two-year-old son. It has decided that Joe and Julie Fletcher, from Northern Ireland, will be allowed to try to conceive an... [Read More]
UK scientist blasts Biobank project
6 September 2004 - by BioNews
Sir Alec Jeffreys, the geneticist who invented the DNA fingerprinting technique, has expressed concerns over the cost and effectiveness of the UK Biobank project. In an article published in the Daily Telegraph, he said he has 'a real concern' that nothing useful will come out of the research. He also... [Read More]
Parkinson's disease gene therapy shows promise
6 September 2004 - by BioNews
The first patient to receive experimental gene therapy treatment for Parkinson's disease is healthy, and has seen an improvement in his symptoms. Fifty-five year-old Nathan Klein, one of 12 people enrolled on a trial taking place at New-York Presbyterian Hospital, received the treatment a year ago. Doctors injected a virus... [Read More]
Stem cell hope for burns and baldness treatments
6 September 2004 - by BioNews
Adult mouse skin contains stem cells that can grow into both skin and hair, a new US study confirms. The findings could lead to new treatments for burns and baldness say the researchers, who published their findings in the journal Cell. The scientists, based at the Rockefeller University in New... [Read More]

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