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CONTENTS Issue #554
Book Review: Regulating Autonomy
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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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Reply to 'Gamete donation in the UK: Time to think again'
13 April 2010 - by Professor Eric Blyth
The Bridge Centre's plea to 'think again' about arrangements for gamete donation in the UK takes yet another ill-founded and unsubstantiated swipe at the lifting of donor anonymity and its impact on donor services. The Bridge Centre also indicts the removal of anonymity, together with donor compensation arrangements, as responsible for the 'explosive growth of fertility tourism'.... [Read More]
Who are the real creators of a living being?
19 April 2010 - by Dr Calum MacKellar
The announcement that scientists at the University of Newcastle have developed a new procedure that could eventually help women with dysfunctional mitochondria (the energy source of the cell), made headline news across the world... [Read More]
Pronuclear transfer may give families affected by mitochondrial disease a choice
19 April 2010 - by Dr Kristina Mills and Dr Marita Pohlschmidt
Research at Newcastle University funded by the Muscular Dystrophy Campaign has shown that it might be possible to prevent mitochondrial diseases being passed from mother to child... [Read More]
Stem cell doctor exploited 'vulnerable' patients, hearing finds
19 April 2010 - by Antony Starza-Allen
The UK's General Medical Council (GMC) has ruled that a UK-registered doctor has exploited a number of vulnerable patients who have multiple sclerosis, offering unproven treatments using stem cells not suitable for human use.... [Read More]
US stem cell funding 'extraordinarily close'
19 April 2010 - by Nishat Hyder
Over a year since US President Barack Obama announced his decision to allow federal funding for embryonic stem cell research, the widely utilised cell lines, H9 and H7, are still weeks away from receiving federal funding approval. The H9 and H7 cell lines were derived and approved under the Bush administration and are currently owned by WiCell Research Institute in Madison, Wisconsin. However, for months now the fate of these two much used lines has been uncertain. According to... [Read More]
Air pollution linked to lower IVF success
19 April 2010 - by Dr Rachael Panizzo
Exposure to air pollution has been linked to a lower chance of IVF success, a study has found. Nitrogen dioxide, fine particulate matter and ozone posed a particular risk, according to the researchers from Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, US... [Read More]
Gene linked to hereditary childhood baldness
19 April 2010 - by Dr Lux Fatimathas
A genetic mutation associated with childhood hereditary baldness has been identified by an US-led study. Researchers discovered a mutation in the APCDD1 gene was common to three families of Italian or Pakistani origin, who were affected by hereditary hypotrichosis simplex (HSS). This disease results in the shrinking of hair follicles and thinning of the hair... [Read More]
Study links genes to chronic kidney disease
19 April 2010 - by Dr Jay Stone
An international study published in Nature Genetics has identified 20 new gene variations linked to increased susceptibility to chronic kidney disease (CKD)... [Read More]
Children with genetic disorder lack racial prejudices
19 April 2010 - by Maren Urner
Children with a rare genetic disorder called Williams syndrome lack normal social fear and appear to have no racial biases, according to German and French researchers. The study is the first to report the absence of racial stereotyping in any human population, according to study co-author Professor Meyer-Lindenberg... [Read More]
New IVF technique could prevent transmission of mitochondrial disorders
19 April 2010 - by Ruth Pidsley
A team of researchers at Newcastle University in the UK has been successful in attempts to transfer genetic material from one newly fertilised human egg to another without carrying over the egg's mitochondria (the energy-producing structures of a cell)... [Read More]
Gene patents may be damaging the genetic testing market, study claims
19 April 2010 - by Harriet Vickers
Researchers examining gene patents used in diagnostic tests say these can block competition and slow innovation, rather than spur development of new technologies for assessing the risk of genetic diseases... [Read More]
Same-sex couple claims to be the first to appear on a child's birth certificate
19 April 2010 - by Dr Vivienne Raper
A lesbian couple have claimed to be the UK's first to be both named on their child's birth certificate. Natalie Woods and Betty Knowles signed the certificate after the birth of Lily-May Betty Woods, who was conceived using donor sperm.... [Read More]
Libel case dropped against science writer
19 April 2010 - by Dr Vivienne Raper
The British Chiropractic Association (BCA) has dropped its libel action against science writer Simon Singh... [Read More]
Book Review: Regulating Autonomy
19 April 2010 - by Dr Malcolm Smith
This book consists of twelve essays that consider the concept of autonomy - individual self-governance - in private life. The essays analyse how much intimate relationships and reproductive decision-making should be affected by law, regulation and social policy. The collection will therefore appeal to legal scholars, social scientists, bioethicists, and policy makers alike... [Read More]

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