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CONTENTS Issue #348
Clinical concerns with the new Finnish fertility law
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Clinical concerns with the new Finnish fertility law
6 March 2006 - by Merja Tuomi-Nikula
It has taken almost two decades to establish a legal basis for fertility treatment in Finland. Two years ago, most of the Parliamentary Legal Affairs Committee wanted to limit treatments to heterosexual couples. However, there was no agreement on the rights of egg and sperm donors to choose anonymity. So... [Read More]
Study confirms genetic link to depression
2 March 2006 - by BioNews
A common genetic variation increases the chances of depression after stressful life events, Australian researchers have confirmed. The study, published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, shows that people who inherit two 'short' versions of a gene that affects the brain chemical serotonin have a high risk of becoming depressed... [Read More]
Global stem cell recommendations published
3 March 2006 - by BioNews
Scientists and bioethicists from 14 countries have published a set of ethical guidelines on stem cell research, in an effort to address conflicting international laws in this area. The 'Hinxton Group', an international consortium on stem cells, ethics and law, met recently for the first time in Cambridge, UK. The... [Read More]
Stem cell heart attack therapy ineffective
3 March 2006 - by BioNews
One form of stem cell therapy for heart attack patients appears to have little effect, German researchers report. The team, based at the German Heart Centre in Munich, carried out the largest trial designed to test the therapy to date. The results, published in the Journal of the American Medical... [Read More]
Women sue makers of embryo gender testing kit
3 March 2006 - by BioNews
Sixteen US women have filed a lawsuit against the makers of a home-testing kit that promises to determine the sex of an embryo as early as five weeks after conception. In a suit filed in the US District Court in Boston, the women claim that the test got the gender... [Read More]
Gene sheds more light on age-related blindness
6 March 2006 - by BioNews
US researchers have identified mutations in two genes that together account for nearly three-quarters of all cases of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a common cause of blindness in the elderly. The study, carried out by scientists based at Columbia University Medical Center in New York, builds on work published by... [Read More]
European court to rule on frozen embryo case
6 March 2006 - by BioNews
Natallie Evans, a British woman seeking the right to be able to use her own frozen IVF embryos, will hear tomorrow if her claim has succeeded in the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). Last September, she asked the ECHR to consider her case, having been refused leave to appeal... [Read More]
US stem cell news
6 March 2006 - by BioNews
The House of Delegates in the US state of Maryland has passed a bill (HB1) to authorise state funding of human embryonic stem (ES) cell research, by 85 votes to 54. The bill was introduced in January by Michael Busch, the speaker of the House, as the Maryland Stem Cell... [Read More]
Vatican conference opposes IVF
6 March 2006 - by BioNews
Pope Benedict XVI has told an international Catholic conference on the scientific and bioethical considerations of 'The Human Embryo Before Implantation', that IVF embryos have a right to life, even before implantation. Speaking to the Pontifical Academy for Life, he declared that all human life was 'sacred and inviolable' and... [Read More]

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