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Looking for genetic relatives in genetic databases is harmful and wrong
20 May 2019 - by Professor Guido Pennings
More and more people are using DNA testing websites. The curiosity about one's ancestry seems to be growing, especially in the USA. In doing so, millions of people are giving away all rights to their genetic information without much concern about what can or will be done with it... [Read More]
Testing times: how should we use genomic data in assisted reproduction
20 May 2019 - by Ana Hallgarten
The Progress Educational Trust's event 'Testing Times: How Should We Use Genomic Data in Assisted Reproduction' took place at Amnesty International in London on the 16 May 2019. The event aimed to give members of the audience an insight into current uses of genomic data in assisted reproduction and its possible future uses... [Read More]
Removing donor anonymity retrospectively in Victoria, Australia – two years on
13 May 2019 - by Louise Johnson
It has been over two years since world-first changes to donor conception laws were implemented in Victoria, Australia, allowing all donor-conceived people to learn their sperm or egg donor's identity... [Read More]
FILM: Talking Genomics with Patients
7 May 2019 - by BioNews
This film documents a Progress Educational Trust/Genomics Education Programme event about genomic medicine... [Read More]
How should we use genomic data in assisted reproduction?
7 May 2019 - by Sandy Starr
Advances in genomics are having a growing impact on fertility treatment and assisted reproduction... [Read More]
FILM: 40 Years of IVF – Past, Present and Future
29 April 2019 - by BioNews
This film documents an event that marked the 40th birthday of the world's second ever IVF baby (and first IVF boy), Alastair MacDonald... [Read More]
Germline in the sand: where should we draw the boundaries for genome editing?
15 April 2019 - by Jennifer Willows
Genome editing was the subject up for discussion at the Progress Educational Trust's 'Germline in the Sand' event, held at the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh on 19 March 2019. The discussion, which was supported by the Scottish Government sought to explore the scientific and ethical boundaries of genome editing, and what place this technology should have within our society... [Read More]
How can we make surrogacy law deliver?
8 April 2019 - by Antony Starza-Allen
After many years of debate, surrogacy law reform is finally on the move. The Law Commissions of England and Wales, and that of Scotland, are now jointly evaluating areas of surrogacy law that have been identified as needing reform, with a view to making recommendations to Government in 2021... [Read More]
Egg-sharing: as relevant in oocyte freezing today as in IVF two decades ago
1 April 2019 - by Dr Kamal Ahuja
A sociologist quoted by the Daily Mail has claimed that an egg-sharing scheme offered by our own and other fertility clinics 'sounds like bribing women to freeze their eggs'. Such schemes, said the University of Buckingham sociologist, seemed no more than a 'marketing ploy' with no regard for 'the long-term consequences'... [Read More]
FILM: From the archive - Baroness Mary Warnock talks to the Progress Educational Trust
1 April 2019 - by BioNews
Following the recent death of Baroness Mary Warnock (Patron of the Progress Educational Trust, which publishes BioNews) we present this film of Mary from our archives... [Read More]
Why we need Siobhain McDonagh's bill to amend the HFE Act
1 April 2019 - by Eleanor Harrison
For the last few months I have been involved with Siobhain's parliamentary push to protect the welfare of women in IVF law... [Read More]
Baroness Mary Warnock: An awesome intellect and joyous human being
25 March 2019 - by Dr Sue Avery
It is November 2015, and the woman described by the Daily Mail as having 'a monstrous ego that has destroyed so much of our moral and social heritage', is sitting, small and twinkly-eyed, on the sofa in her south London home, with Sarah Norcross (PET director), Kirsty Horsey (PET adviser) and myself... [Read More]
Revolutionising reproduction: the future of fertility treatment
25 March 2019 - by Ana Hallgarten
The Progress Educational Trust (PET) symposium event 'Revolutionising Reproduction: The Future of Fertility Treatment' took place at the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh on the 19th March 2019... [Read More]
Getting reliable fertility advice free of commercial interest
18 March 2019 - by Kate Brian
It has never been easier to find information about fertility, with a mass of material online about anything you might want to investigate. There are hundreds of thousands of words covering every condition, test and treatment. And yet it has never been harder to get clear answers to questions. Advice is often conflicting, and it can be hard for lay people to know which sources of information are reliable... [Read More]
Does cannabis really improve sperm counts? The data to date
11 March 2019 - by Professor Sheena Lewis
The study published last month by Dr Jorge Chavarro's group at Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, Massachusetts was indeed a 'surprise study' given the plethora of papers showing contradictory effects... [Read More]
Talking genomics with patients
11 March 2019 - by Jemma Walker and Jo Salter
As part of the annual Genomics Conversation Week of Action, the Progress Educational Trust teamed up with Health Education England's Genomics Education Programme for an event entitled 'Talking Genomics with Patients'... [Read More]
The place of fertility education in UK schools
4 March 2019 - by Professor Adam Balen
Last month, the draft statutory guidance on sex education (now known as Relationship and Sex Education and health education for governing bodies, proprietors, head teachers, principals, senior leadership teams and teachers) was presented to UK government for debate... [Read More]
Why a two-tier system for genomic testing is a bad idea
4 March 2019 - by Jayne Spink
In January, Matt Hancock, secretary of state for health and social care, revealed that Genomics England planned to develop a direct-to-consumer service for whole-genome sequencing, with provision for customers to donate their data for research purposes. [Read More]
Extending the ten-year storage limit for frozen eggs
25 February 2019 - by Salima Budhani and Theodora Middleton
The UK's Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990 requires that human gametes (eggs and sperm) and embryos collected and stored by fertility clinics be destroyed after ten years, except in cases of premature infertility. This time limit applies to women often referred to as 'social' egg freezers irrespective of the age of the woman when the ten-year limit is reached; it applies equally to women who froze eggs when aged 25 and those who froze eggs at 45... [Read More]
Paid-for NHS genomic testing could undermine the 100,000 Genomes Project's work
18 February 2019 - by Professor Bobbie Farsides
Few people can fail to have noticed the response to health secretary Matt Hancock's plans to allow healthy people to pay for NHS genomic testing on the understanding that they will agree to share their results for the purposes of research – a plan which now sits alongside earlier statements relating to children with cancer automatically qualifying for whole genome sequencing... [Read More]
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