World birth rate. Highest in Africa and lowest in Germany and Japan

The current birth rate in Germany means that it is the country with fewest births, even lower than Japan. Germany has a birth rate of 8.2 per 1,000 inhabitants, despite Government efforts to support childcare in Germany. Japan, Portugal and Italy have rates of 8.4,  9.0 and 9.3,...

Male fertility also falls with age

What about male fertility? It is widely accepted that the likelihood of becoming a mother decreases with age in women. However, there are few studies on male fertility. This has now been evaluated however, and has shown that, like in women, the possibility of becoming a father...

Surrogate motherhood. A comprehensive report from european bishops

An extensive surrogacy report has been published by COMECE (Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Community) entitled SURROGACY and HUMAN DIGNITY (February 2015), which concludes that “all forms of gestational surrogacy represent a violent assault on...

Umbilical cord blood stem cell transplant successfully applied in a child with cerebral palsy

The boy had developed cerebral palsy following a cardiac arrest. When he was a normally developed two-and-a-half-year-old, he suffered global cerebral anoxia that led to a vegetative state. Nine weeks later, he received a transfusion of stem cells from his own umbilical cord...

Extremely premature babies. Evaluation of their survival

The survival outcomes of extremely premature babies varies greatly between different hospitals, possibly due to the different medical treatment that they receive. In relation to this, an article has just been published (New England  Journal of Medicine 372, 1801-1811, 2015) which...

Palliative care in Great Britain. A report shows lights and shadows

Palliative care is well established in the United Kingdom, where its practice began in 1967 by Cicely Saunders in St. Christopher’s Hospital.  However, despite its intrinsic goodness, a report on April this year highlighted several limitations in its use, namely that: it...

Fraudulent cell therapy. South Korea, trying to restore its tarnished image in the field, increases safety regulations

South Korea has been trying to restore its tarnished image in the field after the fall of one of its stellar stem-cell scientists, Woo Suk Hwang, who was convicted in 2009 for embezzlement and bioethics violations after falsifying results. The country has begun to regain...

Mother to child transmission of HIV? Now affected couples could conceive a healthy child naturally

Mother to child transmission of HIV is almost resolved. When the existence of people infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) was described in 1980, it was thought that this could directly affect their chances of conceiving a child. However, with the therapeutic advances...

Comprehensive and thorough study of the relationship between attendance at religious services and reduction in mortality

The authors concluded consider that religiousness and spirituality are undervalued in relation to morbidity and mortality, so physicians should take this into account in their patients The World Health Organization defines health as “a state of complete physical, mental and...

Mitochondrial transfer. Researchers extend the procedure to treat infertility problems

So-called mitochondrial transfer has recently been legalised in the United Kingdom. It aims to replace “sick” mitochondria with healthy ones, in an attempt to prevent mitochondrial diseases. Now, researchers hope to extend this technique to replace aging or faulty...