CRISPR/Cas9 for the treatment of haemophilia and other hereditary diseases is being investigated

CRISPR/Cas9 a genetic practise The use of CRISPR/Cas9 , to which we have often referred in Bioethics News (see HERE), in reference to the fact that it could be used to cure diseases due to an alteration in a single gene, is being investigated to treat haemophilia and other...

HIV infection. Home self-test kits avaliable by post

In April 2015, the over-the-counter sale of HIV infection self-testing kits was approved in the United Kingdom. This measure has fostered certain debate about the ethicality of this practice. A study published in the Journal of Medical Ethics (41; 809-813, 2015) concluded that...

Male infertility. Can the new technique resolve it without ethical problems?

Male infertility is often the cause of sterility in a couple. In these circumstances, it may be due to poor sperm maturation. There is now a chance to overcome this defect, using a technique called round spermatid injection or ROSI. The outcomes of its use have now been described...

Induced abortions extinguish 50 million human lives each year

In 2008, there were around 43,800,000 induced abortions worldwide (Lancet, January 2012), i.e. 120,000 per day and 5,000 per hour. This number of abortions is two and a half times the population of Syria (17,064,854 in 2015). While some of the issues with migration and social...

Surrogate mother defied contracting parents by refusing to abort one of the triplets she is expecting

A Californian woman, Brittney Rose Torres, a surrogate mother pregnant with triplets, has received a request from the contracting parents to abort one of the foetuses because they do not want three babies. While the likelihood of triplets was not impossible, it did not enter into...

Can human iPS cells replace the use of human embryonic stem cells?

A hotly debated topic within the specialised scientific world is whether or not human iPS cells are similar to human embryonic cells, which raise too so many ethical issues. It is a mistake to believe that this, in principle, is a problem with exclusively technical implications,...

Gene editing in human embryos. England opened the gates with a scientific community deeply divided in this respect

The United Kingdom Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has approved a request from the Francis Crick Institute to use new gene editing techniques in human embryos for the first time. The research will be led by Dr. Kathy Niakan. The group’s objective is, in...

Face transplant in an American firefighter. Ethical assessment and a brief historical review

By far the most extensive performed successfully Patrick Hardison is a 41-year-old former American firefighter who suffered facial burns while trying to save the life of a woman in a fire. The burns resulted in severe facial disfigurement, causing him major problems with vision,...

Ethical assessment of mitochondrial replacement to prevent transmission of hereditary diseases

Are there any ethical differences to consider between the two existing mitochondrial replacement techniques? A recent article in Bioethics (Bioethics 29; 631–638, 2015) defends the advisability of using pronuclear transfer (PNT) compared to maternal spindle transfer (MST) to...

iPS cells derived from HIV-resistant individuals for the treatment of HIV infection

New technique: It involves iPS cells from HIV-resistant individuals for the treatment of people infected  Some people have a mutation in their genome (CCR5A32) that gives them certain resistance to HIV infection. Taking advantage of this situation, a step has now been taken that...