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About Other Countries' Policies & Human Biotechnology


The United Kingdom

Countries differ widely in the types of human biotechnologies they regulate, the jurisdiction of authority, the nature of enforcement, and other particulars. One requirement for effective policy is a government agency responsible for licensing and monitoring research and commercial facilities that work with human embryos. Frequently cited models are Canada's Assisted Human Reproduction Act and the United Kingdom’s Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority (HFEA).

Many countries have considered prohibiting the most troubling applications: human reproductive cloning and inheritable genetic modification. To date, they are illegal in nearly 50 countries. Similar legislation is pending in other nations.



165,000 Engagements End Due to ‘Genetic Incompatibilities’by Hussain Hazzazi and Ayman Al-SaidalaniSaudi GazetteMarch 24th, 2015In Saudi Arabia, health checkups are mandatory for engaged couples before they get married. The program aims to reduce the risk of having children with any blood or gastronomical diseases.
Polish Government Backs Bill to Regulate IVF Treatmentby Marcin GoettigReuters [Poland]March 10th, 2015The bill would also ban sales and destruction of human embryos, cloning of human embryos and manipulation of human DNA.
Fertility Clinic Courts Controversy With Treatment That Recharges Eggsby Rob SteinNPRMarch 5th, 2015OvaScience hopes to eventually bring the technique to infertile couples in the United States. But the Food and Drug Administration has blocked that effort — pending proof that the technique works and is safe.
Surrogate Mothers in India Unaware of Risksby Frederik JoelvingReutersMarch 2nd, 2015Renting out their wombs may ease financial problems for poor women in India, but new research suggests surrogate mothers there are unaware of the risks and often left out of key medical decisions about their pregnancy.
Egg-Freeze Unadvised, Panel SaysJapan TimesFebruary 26th, 2015The Japan Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology will not recommend egg freezing for healthy young women, citing the health risks and relatively low pregnancy rate.
Thailand Bans Commercial Surrogacy for ForeignersBBCFebruary 20th, 2015Under the new law, only married Thai couples or couples with one Thai partner who have been married at least three years can seek surrogacy.
A primer on DNA forensicsby Blair CrawfordOttawa CitizenFebruary 18th, 2015Improved technology and automation means DNA profiles can now be done in a matter of days and, in the future, the wait could be reduced to just hours. But DNA evidence is hardly infallible.
Les Vertiges Du Transhumanisme[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky and Pete Shanks]by Corine LesnesLe MondeFebruary 12th, 2015"They're selling us technology as if it were a total blessing, but the result could well be that what we take for high-tech marvels are in fact the instrument of power exercised by a few over the rest of us."
Gay Couple Stuck in Mexican Legal Limbo After Birth of Surrogate Twinsby Verónica CalderónEl PaisFebruary 12th, 2015They cannot secure passports for their children, given that the state of Tabasco recognizes surrogate births, while the government department responsible for Mexican passport applications does not.
It's Illegal to Pay a Surrogate Mother in Canada. So What Would Motivate a Woman to do it? by Denise BalkissoonThe Globe and MailFebruary 12th, 2015They show a curious mix of altruism and omnipotence: These are women who give up their very bodies for complete strangers, but only after choosing a lucky few from the desperate hordes.
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