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CONTENTS Issue #285
COMMENT
A plea from Shahana Hashmi
NEWS DIGEST
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A plea from Shahana Hashmi
22 November 2004 - by Shahana Hashmi
After a long legal battle, Raj and Shahana Hashmi won the right to use genetic testing to select an embryo free from beta thalassaemia. The stem cells of their 'saviour sibling' could be used to treat their son Zain's illness. However, despite repeated attempts, Shahana has miscarried several times following... [Read More]
Taste gene clue to alcohol use
18 November 2004 - by BioNews
US researchers have discovered that some people may drink more alcohol than others because of genetic differences that affect their taste buds. The scientists, based at the University of Conneticut, say their findings could help explain differences in people's drinking behaviour. The study focused on light to moderate drinkers, and... [Read More]
WHO sets gene test standard
18 January 2004 - by BioNews
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has approved the first international standard for a human genetic test. WHO hopes that the move, announced on 17 November, will improve the accuracy and quality of laboratory results worldwide for a test that identifies people at high risk of developing blood clots. Establishing the... [Read More]
Legal challenge to first UK cloning licence
19 November 2004 - by BioNews
Opponents of research cloning have served an application for a judicial review on the UK's Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA), over its decision to issue the first licence granting permission to create cloned human embryos. The HFEA issued the licence in August 2004, to Newcastle University researchers working on... [Read More]
Hashmis launch bone marrow donor campaign
22 November 2004 - by BioNews
The parents of five-year-old Zain Hashmi, who is affected by the inherited blood disorder beta thalassaemia, are to launch a bone marrow donor appeal this week. Raj and Shahana Hashmi first hit the headlines in 2001, when they requested permission to use preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) to try and conceive... [Read More]
UN sidesteps international cloning ban
22 November 2004 - by BioNews
The Legal Committee of the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) last week abandoned proposals to adopt an international convention on human cloning. A proposal led by the US and Costa Rica, which would have meant an international treaty banning all forms of human cloning, including for medical research... [Read More]
Children of lesbian couples are 'well adjusted'
22 November 2004 - by BioNews
Research has shown that teenage children raised by lesbian mothers have no developmental differences compared to children of the same age raised by heterosexual parents. Researchers Stephen Russell from the University of Arizona, in Tuscon, US, and Charlotte Patterson and Jennifer Wainwright, from the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, studied... [Read More]
Americans urged to record family health problems
22 November 2004 - by BioNews
Americans are being asked to investigate their family's medical history over their Thanksgiving dinner this year. Thursday 25 November 2004 will be the first National Family History Day, a new initiative designed to highlight the importance of family history in healthcare. Launched by US Surgeon General Richard Carmona, the campaign... [Read More]
US states debate funding of ES cell research
22 November 2004 - by BioNews
The Senate in the state of Illinois, US, last week narrowly rejected a bill that would have promoted human embryonic stem (ES) cell research in the state. The senators voted 29-28 against Bill 3598, with one senator voting 'present', effectively abstaining from the vote. The bill needed 30 votes... [Read More]

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