Home Overview Press Room Blog Publications For Students about us

About United Kingdom Policies & Human Biotechnology

The United Kingdom's Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority (HFEA), established in 1991, is often considered a model for regulating and overseeing human biotechnologies. It licenses and monitors all research involving human embryos, and all facilities offering in vitro fertilization or storage of eggs, sperm, or embryos. UK law does not permit certain activities involving human embryos.

The HFEA's 21 members are appointed by UK Health Ministers; at least half of them are required to be neither doctors nor scientists involved in human embryo research or infertility treatment.

To grant a research license, the HFEA must be satisfied that the use of human embryos is "necessary or desirable" for an enumerated purpose. The HFEA inspects licensed clinics annually; produces a Code of Practice that guides clinics on proper conduct; keeps a formal registry for donors, treatments, and children born; and conducts public consultations on controversial applications.

With World Watching, UK Allows Experiments to Genetically Alter Babiesby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesMarch 4th, 2015Despite several possibly insurmountable legal and safety hurdles, the House of Lords gave the final approval needed to move into fertility clinics the embryo modification techniques referred to as “mitochondrial donation.”
Reproduction 3.0by Leah RamsayBerman Institute of Bioethics BulletinFebruary 26th, 2015Bioethics scholars discuss the science and ethics of the UK vote to allow mitochondrial manipulation procedures.
Mitochondrial Gene Therapy Passes Final U.K. Vote[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Gretchen VogelScience InsiderFebruary 24th, 2015The technique is controversial because the modified DNA would be passed on to future generations.
The Truth about Mitochondrial Replacementby Françoise BaylisImpact EthicsFebruary 23rd, 2015If we are to have honest conversation about possible benefits and harms of mitochondrial replacement, we should start by acknowledging that discussions to date have been a distraction.
Blog: Three Parent IVFby Dr Trevor StammersSt Mary’s University BlogFebruary 16th, 2015At our current stage of understanding of the interactions between mitochondrial and nuclear DNA, this proposed new therapy could turn out to be a monstrous mistake.
Mitochondrial Mission Creep and the Cloning Connection by Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesFebruary 14th, 2015Shoukhrat Mitalipov wants to use nuclear genome transfer for age-related infertility. He has joined forces with the disgraced stem cell researcher Hwang Woo-suk.
ADF to European Parliament: UK ‘Three-Parent Embryo’ Legislation IllegalGlobal DispatchFebruary 13th, 2015Couples can be helped without tampering with the building blocks of humanity. The issue comes down to fundamental human rights and the constitutional traditions of the member states.
Britain is on the Brink of a Perilous Vote for 'Three-Person In Vitro Fertilization'by Marcy Darnovsky and Jessica CussinsLos Angeles TimesFebruary 8th, 2015Crossing this threshold raises a profound societal question that until now has been hypothetical: As biotechnologies improve and enable us to make more specific genetic changes in our offspring, how far will we go?
Big Data and Privacy Rightsby Xavier SymonsBioEdgeFebruary 7th, 2015A review of the British Government’s "care.data" scheme has found that the existing privacy framework needs major revision.
UK Set to Legalize Babies With DNA From 3 Parents[With CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]KQED RadioFebruary 6th, 2015Bay Area public radio discusses the technology and whether the U.S. and other countries may follow Britain's lead.
Breaking Down The Science Of '3-Parent Babies'[With CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Alyona MinkovskiHuffPost LiveFebruary 4th, 2015The U.K. has approved creating babies with the DNA of three different people. We break down the pros, cons and controversy.
U.K. Parliament Approves Controversial Three-Parent Mitochondrial Gene Therapy[With CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Gretchen Vogel and Erik StokstadScienceFebruary 3rd, 2015Despite warnings from scientists, the United Kingdom’s House of Commons voted to allow British researchers to pursue a new fertility treatment that could prevent certain kinds of genetic diseases.
23andMe Only Heightens the Need for Genetic Counsellingby Dr Joyce HarperBioNewsFebruary 2nd, 2015At no point is there any involvement from a physician or genetic counsellor to explain what is being tested for or the consequences of the results.
Three-Person IVF: Science Shows Ethical Questions Remain Unansweredby Ted MorrowThe ConversationFebruary 1st, 2015Bioethicists, policy makers and the general public need to appreciate that genes act in networks and if edited may have unpredictable effects on processes and traits.
Big Push for 3-parent Technology in UK: Some Thoughts From the Other Sideby Paul KnoepflerKnoepfler Lab Stem Cell BlogJanuary 30th, 2015We cannot at this time have a reasonable expectation that this technology would be safe and effective.
UK May Be Poised for “Historic Mistake” on “3-Person IVF”by Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesJanuary 22nd, 2015A Parliamentary vote is expected as soon as February.
UK Moratorium on Use of Genetic Tests by Insurers Extendedby Philippa BricePHG FoundationJanuary 21st, 2015The purpose of the UK moratorium is similarly to ensure that individuals are not debarred from health or life insurance as a result of genetic testing.
Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Tests Should Come With a Health Warningby Jessica CussinsThe Pharmaceutical JournalJanuary 15th, 2015Genetic testing is appropriate in certain situations, but for healthy people as a way to predict disease, it is imprecise and comes with a number of risks.
New Three-Parent Baby Law ‘is Flawed and Open to Challenge’, says Senior Lawyerby Steve ConnorThe Independent [UK]January 14th, 2015The UK Government’s attempt to legalise so-called “three parent” babies is open to challenge by judicial review, warns international law expert Daniel Brennan.
Scientists Use Skin Cells to Create Artificial Sperm and Eggsby Ian SampleThe Guardian December 24th, 2014Researchers in Cambridge converted adult skin tissue into precursors for sperm and eggs.
Commercialized Conception Casualties: "Brave" Baby Making?by Mirah RibenHuffington PostDecember 22nd, 2014Hiring surrogates and purchasing sperm, eggs, or others' leftover frozen embryos have become accepted as choices on a menu of options.
European Court Opens Door for Stem Cell PatentingGenetic Engineering & Biotechnology NewsDecember 18th, 2014The European Court of Justice ruled that human embryonic stem cell patents could be allowed if organisms can't develop into human being.
Top Biopolitical Times Posts of 2014by Jessica Cussins & Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesDecember 18th, 2014In 2014, CGS staffers and contributors posted 107 blogs in Biopolitical Times. These are twelve of our favorites.
23andMe and the Future of Home DNA Testingby David McNameeMedical News TodayDecember 10th, 2014The Google-associated home DNA test company 23andMe will launch its kit in the UK. In the US, however, health results from 23andMe remain unavailable.
Controversial DNA Test Comes to UK[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Michelle Roberts and Paul RinconBBCDecember 2nd, 2014The UK's Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency says the 23andMe spit test can be used with caution. But critics say it may not be accurate enough to base health decisions on.
Deceptive Labeling of a Radical Embryo Construction Techniqueby Stuart A. NewmanThe Huffington PostDecember 1st, 2014The British Parliament appears poised to give the go-ahead to a set of techniques for generating infants which, if implemented, would constitute the first cases of large-scale human genetic engineering.
He May Have Unravelled DNA, but James Watson Deserves to be Shunnedby Adam RutherfordThe GuardianDecember 1st, 2014The scientist is crying poverty and selling his Nobel prize medal, but why should anyone be interested in his racist, sexist views?
Exclusive: First Gene Therapy Drug Sets Million-Euro Price Recordby Ludwig Burger and Ben HirschlerReutersNovember 26th, 2014The Western world's first gene therapy drug is set to go on sale in Germany with a $1.4 million price tag, a new record for a medicine to treat a rare disease.
Why Worry About Genetically Modified Babies?by Marcy Darnovsky and Jessica CussinsGeneWatchNovember 24th, 2014The terms "genetically modified babies" and "designer babies" are attention-getters. But beyond the catchy sound bites, what do they really mean - and are they something we need to worry about?
Human Germline Modification in the UK? Cries of Caution from all Cornersby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesNovember 13th, 201475% of submissions about three-person IVF to the UK House of Commons Science and Technology Committee warn that more evidence is needed prior to offering these techniques.
Combining The DNA Of Three People Raises Ethical Questionsby Rob SteinNPRNovember 10th, 2014It would be the first time genetic changes have been made in human DNA that would be passed on, down the generations, through the germline.
MPs Vote to Make Sex Selection Abortion Illegalby Georgia GrahamDaily Telegraph [UK]November 4th, 2014MPs vote 181 to 1 for a motion brought forward by a cross-party alliance in an effort to end uncertainty over the law.
Open Letter to UK Parliament: Avoid Historic Mistake on Rushing Human Genetic Modificationby Paul KnoepflerKnoepfler Lab Stem Cell BlogNovember 2nd, 2014There are too many unanswered questions and risks that remain to allow it to proceed at this time. In fact, moving forward with it would most likely be a tragic mistake for the UK.
What Good is a Scientific Meeting If You Dismiss the Science?by Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesOctober 29th, 2014The Science and Technology Committee of the UK Parliament held an evidence hearing last week to examine the science and proposed regulation of so-called “mitochondrial donation,” or “3-person IVF,” but huge swaths of evidence were widely dismissed.
Why We Should Teach the History of Eugenicsby Jonathan ChernoguzBiopolitical TimesOctober 28th, 2014Two prominent universities have launched initiatives to focus on the history of eugenics.
Minister Sparks Backlash for Suggesting Foreigners Could Undergo 'Three-Parent Babies' IVF Treatment in Britainby Ben Riley-SmithTelegraphOctober 23rd, 2014MPs and peers from across the political divide raised fears the move could create a new front of health tourism, with foreigners coming to the UK to circumvent bans in their home countries.
Eugenics: The Academy's Complicityby Nathaniel Adam Tobias ColemanTimes Higher EducationOctober 9th, 2014The University of London will face up to its complicity in constructing unjust racial hierarchy, 110 years to the day that the university legitimised Francis Galton's research on eugenics.
The Collapse of a Dangerous Analogy: Or, why mitochondria are much more than batteries by Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesSeptember 29th, 2014Amid a flood of new evidence that mitochondria impact an individual’s traits, the editors at New Scientist have made a “U-turn” on “three-parent babies.” Their new conclusion: “It’s more messy than we thought.”
Three-Parent Babies: It's More Messy Than we Thoughtby EditorialNew ScientistSeptember 18th, 2014It appears that we may have seriously underestimated the influence that mitochondria have. Recent research suggests that they play a key role in some of the most important features of human life.
New Poll Finds Only 18% of British Adults in Support of "3-Person IVF"by Jessica CussinsBiopolitcal TimesSeptember 15th, 2014A newly released poll finds substantial public reluctance to change UK law to allow the genetic modification of future generations.
Myth Replacement Therapy: MPs Debate the Science of Mitochondriaby Dr Ted MorrowBioNewsSeptember 8th, 2014There are clearly misconceptions about mitochondrial genetics repeated during the debate that are not supported by current scientific evidence.
"3-Person IVF" Debated in UK Parliamentby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesSeptember 3rd, 2014The debate in Britain over combining eggs or embryos to prevent the transmission of mitochondrial disease received a public airing, though no firm conclusion, in the House of Commons on September 1st.
Britain will be considered a 'rogue state' if it creates GM people, MP warnsPress AssociationSeptember 1st, 2014Allowing mitochondrial replacement therapy to prevent the birth of children with incurable diseases could lead to people being created for 'harvesting their parts'
British baby Gammy: Surrogate claims mum refused to take disabled twinby Ellen WallworkParentDishAugust 26th, 2014A British surrogate mother of twins has said the intended mother rejected one of the babies because she was born with a disability.
Medical dilemma of 'three-parent babies': Fertility clinic investigates health of teenagers it helped to be conceived through controversial IVF techniqueby Steve ConnorThe Independent (UK)August 25th, 2014A private fertility clinic in the United States has launched an investigation into the health of 17 teenagers who were born as a result of a controversial IVF technique that produced the world’s first “three-parent” embryos more than 15 years ago.
Should We Open the Door to Genetically Modified Babies?by Jessica CussinsCNBCAugust 11th, 2014There has been a lot of confusion around this controversial issue, but as we are now facing a historic crossroads, it is important to set the record straight.
Genetic Testing of Citizens: A Backdoor Into Total Population Surveillance by Governments, Companiesby Helen WallaceEpoch TimesAugust 3rd, 2014The new Chief Executive of England's National Health Service wants to make people’s personal genetic information the basis of their treatments.
Genome Project Will Transform Cancer Careby Ian SampleThe Guardian [UK]July 31st, 2014About 40,000 patients with cancer and rare diseases will have their genomes sequenced, which David Cameron claims will transform how serious diseases are diagnosed and treated.
Eugenic Policies of the Past Teach Sobering Lessonsby Calum MacKellarThe ScotsmanJuly 24th, 2014The support of Scottish thinkers for eugenics is revealed in a new book entitled The Ethics of the New Eugenics.
Making Sense of the BRAINby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesJuly 24th, 2014As criticisms of the brain projects on both sides of the Atlantic ramp up, what lessons can be learned from the successes and failures of the Human Genome Project?
Three Person IVF Plans 'Progress' in UKby Smitha MundasadBBCJuly 22nd, 2014"Looking back 15 years from now in the midst of a designer baby marketplace, people will see this as the moment when the crucial ethical line was crossed."
Procedure to Create Babies with Three People's DNA Could be Legalised in April [UK]by Ian SampleThe Guardian July 22nd, 2014The Department of Health will press ahead with regulations on mitochondrial transfer after public consultation, but several hurdles remain.
Safety Concerns Remain Over Three-Person IVFby Ted MorrowThe GuardianJuly 22nd, 2014There is a lack of data from species more closely related to humans – a gap in our knowledge that would be wise to fill before proceeding to clinical trials.
Scientists Threaten to Boycott €1.2bn Human Brain Projectby Ian SampleThe GuardianJuly 6th, 2014Researchers say a European commission-funded initiative to simulate the human brain suffers from 'substantial failures.'
The Brave New World of Three-Parent I.V.F.[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Kim TingleyNew York Times MagazineJune 27th, 2014The historic nature of the moment has turned the technique into a symbol, a red line separating humanity from a dystopian or progressive future, depending on how you look at it.
Selling the Next False Hope? How Experimental IVF Techniques Could be Legalized Despite Increasing Evidence of Potential Harmby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesJune 24th, 2014Contrary to official reports, new evidence shows that “3-person IVF” could pose serious risks to women and children. So why are we being told that it’s a “not unsafe” option?
Three Parents and a Baby - Scientists Advise Caution with Regard to Artificial Insemination MethodHealth CanalJune 18th, 2014One mitochondrial type may be able to assert itself against the other. If the assertive one happens to carry the defective mtDNA, the benefit of the therapy would be jeopardized.
Lord Winston Criticises 'Jungle' World of British Fertility Treatmentby Steve ConnorThe IndependentJune 15th, 2014In his strongest attack yet on the UK's "incompetent" IVF watchdog, the fertility medicine pioneer says the field is now being driven by profit, often at the expense of patients.
Should Three People be Allowed to Make a Baby?by Arielle Duhaime-RossVergeJune 12th, 2014Researchers might soon make a child with three genetic parents, but the ethics of "designer babies" haven't been worked out.
"Three-Person IVF" Update Reveals How Little We Knowby Jessica CussinsThe Huffington PostJune 5th, 2014The UK fertility regulator has been saying the techniques are "not unsafe" for three years now. This should not be interpreted to mean that they are in fact safe.
"3-Person IVF” Update Reveals How Little We Knowby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesJune 5th, 2014A new report on the safety and efficacy of three-person IVF confirms that it would be dangerous and misguided to allow these techniques into UK fertility clinics anytime soon.
Genetic Information is Irrelevant to Most People's Care[Press Release]GeneWatch UKJune 4th, 2014"Plans to sequence everybody's genomes in the NHS are driven by commercial interests and are not in the public interest," said Dr Helen Wallace of GeneWatch UK.
The Genome's Big Data Problemby Joseph CoxMother BoardJune 4th, 2014Serious concerns around genetic data need to be handled before we all jump on the genome band wagon. How will the data be stored? Who will be able to access it? What security will be in place?
Making Embryos from 3 People Doesn't Look Unsafe[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Maria ChengAssociated PressJune 3rd, 2014Britain's fertility regulator called for further experiments before patients are treated. If approved, Britain would become the first country in the world to allow embryos to be genetically modified this way.
Will the UK Disrupt the Global Consensus against Human Germline Modifications?by Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesMay 14th, 2014What might be the short and long-term effects on global policy if the UK allows the creation of embryos with permanently altered genetic makeup?
NHS Fertility Treatments Allow Two-Mum Families to Reach Record Levels by Emily DuganThe IndependentMarch 27th, 2014Record numbers of lesbian couples are becoming parents through fertility treatment, official figures show. The number of two-mum families jumped by more than a third in 2012 in the UK.
Slowing the Rush to Genetically Modified Babiesby Enola AirdMomsRisingMarch 22nd, 2014The United Kingdom is moving closer to allowing scientists to create genetically modified children – something no country in the world currently authorizes.
Letter to HFEA: Consider the Risks of “Mitochondrial Manipulation” Discussed by the FDA by Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesMarch 21st, 2014A letter signed by 53 prominent scholars and advocates has been sent to the UK agency considering clinical trials of so-called "mitochondrial manipulation."
Majority of UK Women Oppose Legalizing the Creation of "3-Person Embryos"by Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesMarch 19th, 2014A just-completed poll has found that the UK public is deeply conflicted about the government's move to legalize the creation of "3-person embryos."
New Polling Raises Public Safety Concerns About Three Parent Children Proposalsby Press ReleaseCareMarch 13th, 2014A new opinion poll supports the concern that the Government is rushing ahead with its plans to allow the creation of 3-parent children without public support or the necessary safety tests.
What We Know About Three-Parent In Vitro Fertilizationby Jessica CussinsRH Reality CheckMarch 13th, 2014The creation of genetically manipulated babies would be a huge and dangerous step. So, what's the evidence about efficacy and safety, and what are the available alternatives?
UK Opens Public Consultation on Draft Regulations to Permit “Three-Person Embryos”by Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesMarch 6th, 2014The UK Department of Health has released draft regulations and begun a three-month public consultation for what it terms “mitochondrial donation.”
U.K. Government Proposes Rules to Allow 'Three-Parent Embryos'by Gretchen VogelScience InsiderFebruary 27th, 2014The U.K. government issued proposed regulations that would allow researchers to try a new and controversial technique that would result in a form of genetic alteration that could be passed on to future generations.
Genetically Modified Babiesby Marcy DarnovskyThe New York TimesFebruary 23rd, 2014An advisory committee of the Food and Drug Administration is set to consider radical biological procedures that, if successful, would produce genetically modified human beings. This is a dangerous step.
FDA Asked to Approve Creation of Genetically Modified Childrenby Stuart A. NewmanHuffington PostFebruary 20th, 2014The creation of "three-parent babies" has been touted as a relatively trivial tweaking of the reproductive process to enable women with compromised eggs to become genetic mothers of unaffected children. These claims of high impact health benefits from a low-risk procedure cannot be squared with scientific reality.
What are the Best Interests of the Child in International Surrogacy?by Professor Eric Blyth, Dr Marilyn Crawshaw and Professor Olga van den AkkerBioNewsFebruary 17th, 2014As the surrogacy industry grows, so too do calls for a loosening of international and domestic restraints. A consequence of this is the potential marginalization of the best interests of children.
Why we Should Opt Out of the Government's New Patient Databaseby Edward HockingsThe GuardianJanuary 31st, 2014Medical records in England and Wales will soon be linked to whole-sequenced genomes. Choosing to "opt out" is also taking a stand on what kind of society we want in the future.
The Era Of Genetically-Altered Humans Could Begin This Yearby David DiSalvoForbesJanuary 26th, 2014By the middle of 2014, the prospect of altering DNA to produce a genetically-modified human could move from science fiction to science reality.
Is genius in the genes?by Steven RoseTESJanuary 24th, 2014The debate about genes and intelligence has resurfaced, and it’s more fervent than ever. Can achievement truly be inherited? Should education be tailored to individuals’ genetic potential?
Soaring sales of 'dangerous' do-it-yourself DNA test kits: Number of websites selling products doubles in two yearsby Sean PoulterDaily Mail (UK)January 20th, 2014Sales of DNA tests for everything from the risk of developing life-threatening diseases to catching out cheating partners are booming, though many scientists suggest that DIY home DNA testing could cause real harm.
[UK] NHS patient data to be made available for sale to drug and insurance firmsby Randeep RameshThe GuardianJanuary 19th, 2014Drug and insurance companies will from later this year be able to buy information on patients – including mental health conditions and diseases such as cancer, as well as smoking and drinking habits – once a single English database of medical data has been created. Harvested from GP and hospital records, medical data covering the entire population will be uploaded to the repository controlled by a new arms-length NHS information centre, starting in March. Never before has the entire medical history of the nation been digitised and stored in one place.
The UK's Deplorable Witch Hunt Against Asian Women by Marge BererRH Reality CheckJanuary 16th, 2014Since The Telegraph's sex-selective abortion sting last year, there's been a witch hunt against abortion providers that is now threatening to become the equivalent of stop-and-search against Asian women.
Illegal abortion of female foetuses by some ethnic groups who favour sons has reduced female populationby Keith PerryThe Telegraph [UK]January 15th, 2014Some ethnic communities in Britain are requesting illegal abortions on grounds of sex, according to a Telegraph investigation.
Should Persons Affected by Mitochondrial Disorders Not be Brought Into Existence?by Professor Calum MacKellarBioNewsJanuary 6th, 2014What is being proposed is not a form of therapy in which a person is being treated or cured for a disorder. Instead, it is making sure that certain persons are not brought into existence.
The Three-Parent Dilemma by Enola AirdMomsRisingDecember 17th, 2013The United Kingdom is on the verge of permitting scientists to move forward with a procedure that would alter the human germline. Mothers everywhere should be deeply concerned.
Three Biological Parents and a Babyby Karen WeintraubThe New York TimesDecember 16th, 2013“This crosses a line drawn by many scientists and bioethicists at altering the genetic profile of unborn children,” an F.D.A. panel wrote.
Professor Plomin Goes to Parliamentby John GillottBioNewsDecember 16th, 2013The House of Commons Education Committee, currently investigating 'underachievement in education of white working class children,' heard about the genetics of children with learning disabilities.
Similar But Not Identical: Study Reveals More About Twins Than About Educationby Steve ConnorIndependentDecember 13th, 2013The headlines this week about a new study of the role of genetics in educational achievement told only part of the story.
Designer Sperm Passes Selected Genes to Future GenerationsGenetic Engineering and Biotechnology NewsDecember 3rd, 2013UK scientists have found a way to insert new genetic material into mouse spermatozoa so that it remains functional after passing through at least three generations.
Are Three Parents One Too Many?[Quotes CGS]by Stephen L. CarterBloombergNovember 27th, 2013The U.K. may soon approve a regulatory proposal that would allow scientists to create a human embryo using the DNA of three individuals. What’s striking is how the many opponents span the political spectrum.
The Mixed Legacy of the UK’s Departing Fertility Regulatorby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesNovember 20th, 2013The departing chair of the UK agency that regulates fertility treatments is criticizing aspects of the fertility industry, but still champions a form of inheritable human genetic modification.
In Defence of Privacyby Dr Stuart HogarthBioNewsNovember 18th, 2013Not everyone is convinced that the public disclosure policy of the Personal Genome Project is the best response to the difficulties of safeguarding genomic confidentiality.
Limits Lifted on Number of Twins and Triplets Born Through IVFby Charlie CooperThe IndependentNovember 13th, 2013The UK's IVF regulator announced that clinics will no longer have to ensure that multiple births account for only 10 per cent of their successful cases.
An Inconvenient Truth: ICSI is Not Necessary for the Majority of IVF Patientsby Dr Steven FlemingBioNewsNovember 11th, 2013Some IVF practitioners advocate that all couples should be treated with ICSI, but concerns over its long-term safety have been raised.
Open-Access Genome Project Lands in UKby Ewen CallawayNatureNovember 7th, 2013The founder of the Personal Genome Project announced the launch of a UK edition, and a European franchise on the way for 2014.
Advocating Eugenics in the UK Department of Educationby Pete ShanksHuffington PostOctober 28th, 2013A senior adviser to the UK Secretary of State for Education has provoked a flurry of complaints about his technocratic, effectively eugenic, definitely gene-focused approach to public policy.
GPs Told They Must Warn Patients Against Having Sex-Selective Abortions by Daniel MartinThe Daily MailOctober 24th, 2013The UK's Chief Medical Officer will write to all family doctors to make it plain that abortions carried out solely on the grounds of the sex of the child are wrong.
A Former IVF Baby on "Three-Parent IVF"by Jessica CussinsThe Huffington PostOctober 24th, 2013Mitochondrial replacement raises one of the thorniest questions humanity will ever face: are we willing to genetically modify future generations of humans?
1.7m DNA Profiles Cut From DatabasePress AssociationOctober 24th, 2013As part of the UK's commitment to slim down the amount of information held by the state, millions of DNA profiles and fingerprint records from innocent people have been deleted.
Advocating Eugenics in the UK Department of Educationby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesOctober 24th, 2013Dominic Cummings, a senior adviser to the UK Secretary of State for Education, recently provoked a flurry of complaints about his technocratic, effectively eugenic, definitely gene-focused approach to public policy.
Regulators Weigh Benefits of ‘Three-Parent’ Fertilization[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Erika Check HaydenNatureOctober 15th, 2013Scientists and other critics say mitochondrial replacement carries safety and ethical concerns.
Dominic Cummings may Disagree, but Wealth is Considerably More Heritable than Genesby Polly ToynbeeThe GuardianOctober 14th, 2013His section on genetics implies that human fate is sealed at birth, as the Calvinists and eugenicists thought.
Three parent babies 'incompatible with human dignity'by Nick CollinsThe Telegraph [UK]October 4th, 2013A group of 34 European politicians has signed a declaration attacking plans that would make the UK the first country in the world to permit the technique.
Scientists Warn Against “Three-Parent IVF” Experimentby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesSeptember 25th, 2013Three evolutionary biologists enumerate a number of scientific studies and methodological shortcomings that have been overlooked in the debate on mitochondrial replacement. Their study has elicited numerous defensive responses, despite bringing important details to bear.
CGS Letter to the President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of EuropeSeptember 20th, 2013Regarding the UK's possible approval of "mitochondria replacement," techniques that constitute human inheritable genetic modification.
Don’t Use India’s Missing Girls to Deny Women Reproductive Rightsby Mallika DuttRH Reality CheckSeptember 16th, 2013The attention to son preference by the U.S. Foreign Relations Committee should be cause for celebration, but the people shaking their fists the hardest about the issue are actually those who are most hostile to women’s rights.
Consortium Receives $8M to Investigate Molecular Roots of Extreme AggressionGenomeWebSeptember 12th, 2013The European Union has approved and funded a project called Aggressotype, aimed at determining the molecular roots of extreme aggression in children.
The Politics of Sex Selective Abortion Bans in the UK and the USby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesSeptember 12th, 2013Recent publicity in the UK, and lawsuits and legislative hearings in the US, are a reminder that right-wing activists make cynical use of the sex selection issue to restrict women's reproductive rights.
Republican Lawmakers Criticize Indian Government for Failing to Stop Sex-Selective Abortionsby Matthew PenningtonAssociated PressSeptember 10th, 2013A Congressional panel convened by a staunch opponent of abortion rights heard conflicting testimony about how to address sex selection in India.
The Campaign Against Sex-Selective Abortion is a Cynical Effort to Take Choice Away from Pregnant Women by Sarah DitumNewStatesmanSeptember 9th, 2013Sex selective abortion is abhorrent, and it must be prevented. But the Telegraph's campaign against it is part of its long-running attack on abortion provision.
Pro-Choice Feminists Should be More Appalled than Anyone by the Sex-Selection Abortion Storyby Tom ChiversThe TelegraphSeptember 6th, 2013Earlier this year, undercover reporters for this newspaper found that doctors in British clinics were willing to perform abortions on foetuses for no other reason than its sex. Pro-choice feminists need to address this honestly.
Gender Abortions: Criminal Charges Not in 'Public Interest' Says CPSby John Bingham, and Claire NewellThe TelegraphSeptember 4th, 2013UK doctors who agreed to arrange illegal abortions based on the fetus' sex won't face criminal charges, despite prosecutors admitting there is enough evidence to take them to court.
Elementary, My Dear Fluffy: Cat DNA Solves Another Homicideby Alan BoyleNBC NewsAugust 14th, 2013DNA from cat hairs has helped crack a homicide case, demonstrating again the power of genetic pet databases to solve crimes.
UK Forensic Science Slammed by Inquiryby Daniel CresseyNatureJuly 25th, 2013UK government failures over forensic science are leading to fragmentation, research gaps and possibly even miscarriages of justice, according to a parliamentary inquiry on the subject.
UK Medical Research Regulators Spared the Axeby Daniel CresseyNature News BlogJuly 18th, 2013The future of the UK regulatory bodies for human-embryo and human-tissue research has been safeguarded.
The Ethics of Three-Genetic-Parent Embryos[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Margaret SomervilleOttawa CitizenJuly 17th, 2013The human germline must be held on trust as the common heritage of humankind, no matter how much good we believe we could do by altering it.
Mice With Human Chromosomes - The Genetic Breakthrough That Could Revolutionise Medicine by Steve ConnorThe IndependentJuly 11th, 2013Scientists have created genetically-engineered mice with artificial human chromosomes in every cell of their bodies.
Eight Misconceptions about “Three-Parent Babies”by Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesJuly 9th, 2013Amid the talk about “mitochondria replacement” or “three-parent babies," here are the top misconceptions proliferating about the efficacy, safety, public support, and societal implications.
A Slippery Slope to Human Germline Modificationby Marcy DarnovskyNatureJuly 9th, 2013The United Kingdom’s decision to trial the technique of mitochondrial replacement is premature and ill-conceived.
Jeremy Hunt launches genomics body to oversee healthcare revolutionby Randeep RameshThe GuardianJuly 4th, 2013Genomics England will aim to attract private investment in life sciences, but campaigners raise patient privacy concerns.
Expert Panel Debates the Manipulation of Human Genetics[With CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]CCTV AmericaJune 30th, 2013Anchor Elaine Reyes moderates a discussion between Marcy Darnovsky, Executive Director at the Center for Genetics and Society, and David King, Director at Human Genetics Alert, on the manipulation of human genetics.
Three Person IVFby Paula BoddingtonPractical EthicsJune 29th, 2013Unfortunately, this debate, like so many others in announcements of developing science and technology related to health in general and genetics in particular, is marred by hype and by urgency.
Three Parents? Sorry, But This is Science Gone Madby Melanie McDonaghTelegraphJune 29th, 2013We are ignoring the ethical implications of genetic interference in human babies.
Three Parent Baby[With CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]KPIX HealthWatchJune 27th, 2013Mitochondrial replacement would create "three parent babies," and could be attempted in humans soon, but carries risks to the child and broad societal consequences.
Public Interest Group Urges UK Government Not to Break International Consensus Against Inheritable Genetic Modification[Press statement]June 27th, 2013That the UK may move toward permitting mitochondrial replacement is particularly disturbing when the safety is very much in doubt, when its usefulness is dubious, and when the claim of public support is highly misleading at best.
UK Building DNA Database in the NHS 'By Stealth'by Helen WallacePublic Service EuropeMay 23rd, 2013The plan involves sequencing the DNA of everyone in England and adding this information as an attachment to each person's medical file.
Patenting Parthenotes: High Court Asks if Parthenotes are 'Human Embryos' Under the Biotech Directiveby Antony Blackburn-StarzaBioNewsApril 29th, 2013The UK's High Court has asked the Court of Justice of the European Union to clarify if human parthenotes fall under the definition of a human embryo for the purposes of patentability.
Your Genetic Make Up to be Stored, Without Consent, for Profit TechEyeApril 25th, 2013Genetic data is massively revealing. It can be used to identify relatives, and to assess the potential for passing recessive genetic disorders on to children.
“World's First GM Babies Born”: 12-Year-Old Article Continues to Cause Confusionby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesApril 25th, 2013An undated Daily Mail article that is actually over a decade old continues to spread misinformation about human genetic modification.
The Baby Blueprint [VIDEO][With CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]Al Jazeera EnglishApril 22nd, 2013Would you choose your child's genetic potential? Live debate with Marcy Darnovsky, Stuart Newman, Julian Savulescu, and Nita Farahany.
Lord Robert Winston Warning Over Child ‘Eugenics’ by Lyndsay BucklandScotsmanApril 11th, 2013A leading fertility expert warns that reproductive technologies could enable a form of eugenics with serious implications for the individuals involved and society in general.
The Right to Speak Out[Editorial]NatureApril 9th, 2013Controversy over the results touted by a genetic-ancestry firm has highlighted the need for reform of the United Kingdom’s restrictive libel law.
Three-Parent Children in UK Possible After HFEA Report[Quotes the Center for Genetics and Society]by Michael CookBioEdgeApril 6th, 2013The UK fertility regulator's report to the government misrepresented its own findings about public opinion.
New gene therapy births 'designer baby' fearsby Gavin O'TooleAl Jazeera (English)April 3rd, 2013Critics say the move would be the first step towards the creation of "designer babies" and herald a new era of "consumer eugenics."
New Technology Can Make It So 1 Baby Has 3 Parents[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]CBS New YorkMarch 29th, 2013“People have characterized this as sliding down a slippery slope. This one actually throws us off a cliff."
UK May Be Close To Approving Nuclear Transfer Technique for IVF[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by John FarrellForbesMarch 28th, 2013The conception of children who share the genes of three parents could be one step closer to reality.
Scientists Unravel Genetic Causes of Prostate, Breast and Ovarian Cancerby Ian SampleThe Guardian March 27th, 2013A national screening programme for prostate cancer could be introduced by the NHS following an international effort by more than 1,000 scientists to unravel the genetic causes of prostate, breast and ovarian cancer.
Broad Public Support for "3-Parent Babies" and Crossing the Human Germline? Not What the Data Sayby Jessica Cussins & Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesMarch 21st, 2013The UK regulatory agency’s summary of its public consultation on mitochondria replacement highlights "broad public support" for a procedure that would cross a crucial ethical and policy line. But that support is not actually demonstrated in its data.
Alarm over genetic control of embryos[Letter to the editor]The Times [UK]March 20th, 2013If the proposed procedures are allowed, the reconstructed egg or embryo will have an altered, and inheritable, genetic composition.
HealthWatch: Britain Considers Allowing Babies From 3 Parents [Video][With CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Kim MulvihillCBS San FranciscoMarch 20th, 2013Britain's fertility regulator says it has found broad public support for in vitro fertilization techniques that allow babies to be created with DNA from three people for couples at risk of passing on potentially fatal genetic diseases.
Three-Person IVF Moves Closer in UKby James GallagherBBC NewsMarch 20th, 2013The UK has moved closer to becoming the first country to allow the creation of babies from three people.
Eugenics Fear Over Gene Modification[Letter to the Editor]by David King et al.The GuardianMarch 15th, 2013The benefits of mitochondrial replacement are heavily outweighed by the risks to the child and to society.
Experiments with Inheritable Genetic Modificationby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesMarch 13th, 2013A developmental biologist looks carefully at research on mitochondria replacement that would be an experimental form of human inheritable genetic modification.
If Your Dog is About to Die, Why Not Clone It?by Leo HickmanGuardianMarch 11th, 2013A researcher in South Korea claims he can clone your pet. All he needs is some tissue from the animal and $100,000.
GM Babies?by Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesMarch 5th, 2013A debate about genetically engineered babies is hijacked by slick rhetoric.
To Claim Someone has 'Viking Ancestors' is no Better than Astrologyby Mark ThomasThe Guardian February 25th, 2013The truth about direct-to-consumer ancestry tests is that there is little scientific substance to most of them and they are better thought of as genetic astrology.
Parents of Down's Syndrome Woman, 21, Can NOT Have her Sterilised, Rules Judge by Daniel MillerDaily MailFebruary 16th, 2013In a landmark ruling in London, the sterilization of a woman with Down's syndrome at her parents' request was ruled 'disproportionate' and in violation of her human rights.
Sale of Personal Gene Data Condemned as 'Unethical and Dangerous'by Jamie DowardThe Guardian February 16th, 2013Critics say companies could acquire personal information that would identify National Health Service patients without their consent.
Latest Figures on Fertility Treatment, Birth Rate and Multiple Births are Releasedby Matt ThomasBioNewsFebruary 11th, 2013Figures released by the UK's Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority reveal the number of IVF cycles performed each year has continued to rise while the multiple pregnancy and birth rate has declined and the live birth rate per cycle has remained steady.
Egg Sharing Cuts Bristol's IVF Waiting Listby Polly MarchBBC NewsJanuary 12th, 2013A new "egg sharing" programme and an increase in the amount egg donors are compensated have significantly cut waiting times for couples needing donor eggs in the UK. At what cost?
UK Government's Enthusiasm for GM Not Matched in Developing Nationsby John VidalThe Guardian January 4th, 2013Across the world, countries are turning their backs on GM crops; perhaps the coalition in the UK could learn something from them.
1.7 Million Human Embryos Created for IVF Thrown Awayby Andrew HoughThe TelegraphDecember 31st, 2012Official statistics show that almost half of embryos used to help a women conceive through in vitro fertilisation were thrown away during or after the process.
Brave New Cells?by Donna DickensonProject SyndicateDecember 29th, 2012Supporters of mitochondria replacement neglect a crucial factor in the debate: the techniques being developed involve permanent genetic alterations passed on to future generations.
Exclusive: Rise in Number of Couples Seeking 'Wombs for Hire' Abroad by Jeremy LauranceThe IndependentDecember 28th, 2012The number of British couples formally registering children born to foreign surrogates has nearly trebled in five years, raising concerns that poor women in developing countries are being exploited by rich Westerners.
A DNA Database in the NHS: The End of Privacy?by Helen WallacePublic Service EuropeDecember 12th, 2012Governments, police, journalists, employers, insurers and even nosy neighbours would inevitably get access to personal information about medical conditions and non-paternity if a DNA database is built in the National Health Service.
Plans for NHS Database of Patients' DNA Angers Privacy Campaignersby Jamie DowardThe Guardian (UK)December 8th, 2012"This Big Brother project will allow every individual and their relatives to be identified and tracked."
Rights to Maternity Leave Granted to Parents Through Surrogacyby Sarah GuyBioNewsNovember 26th, 2012The right to maternity leave in the UK will be extended to parents of children born through surrogacy, under proposed changes to rules on parental leave recently announced by the Government.
Fertility Treatment Waiting Times Halve After Increased Payments to Donorsby Rebecca SmithThe Telegraph (UK)November 26th, 2012An increase in payments for women's eggs has halved the waiting time for fertility treatment in the UK.
Mitochondria Replacement Would Forever Alter the Human Germline. Do You Want a Say? by Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesNovember 15th, 2012The Center for Genetics and Society has sent a letter strongly recommending against changing the United Kingdom law that – like those in dozens of other countries – prohibits procedures that would alter the genes we pass on to our children.
Heat Monitor's Fertile Ground for Would-be Parentsby Amy WilsonTelegraph [UK]November 13th, 2012Scientists eye the US market after their device to help couples have a baby, DuoFertility, is a success in Britain.
Genetic Profiteering: Scandal of Firm 'Hiding Vital Breast Cancer Data' by Steve ConnorThe IndependentNovember 1st, 2012Myriad Genetics is accused of deliberately withholding data that could help other scientists to understand cancer genetics, on the grounds that the information is commercially sensitive.
Human Genetic Modification Experiment in Oregon Shows Promise, Risks, Experts Say[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Nick BudnickThe OregonianOctober 24th, 2012Researchers have replaced unfertilized eggs' mitochondrial DNA, raising concerns about human germline modifications.
Proposed New Gene Manipulation Technique in IVF: Is it Safe? Needed? A Precedent to Designer Babies?by Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesOctober 2nd, 2012Is a new “3-parent baby” fertility technique a way to avoid terrible disease, or a dangerous form of human experimentation?
Man accused of rape was innocent victim of DNA sample mistakeby Wesley JohnsonThe Independent [UK]October 1st, 2012The contamination was the result of human error, and the procedures themselves were not adequate. Many laboratories fall short of accepted standards.
Thousands of ex-offenders targeted in drive to add to DNA databaseby Sandra LavilleThe GuardianSeptember 27th, 2012The profiles of thousands of innocent people who have been arrested but not convicted of any crimes remain in the UK's police DNA database.
How To Buy a Daughter: Choosing the sex of your baby has become a multimillion-dollar industry[Quotes CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]by Jasmeet SidhuSlateSeptember 14th, 2012The US is one of the few countries that allows preimplantation genetic diagnosis for prenatal sex selection, which could have negative consequences for parents and children alike.
DNA Test Jailed Innocent Man for Murderby Hannah BarnesBBC NewsAugust 31st, 2012Scientists, lawyers and politicians have raised concerns over the quality of forensic evidence testing - is the criminal justice system too reliant on lab tests without seeing their limitations?
British Couples Flying to US For Banned Baby Sex Selectionby  Stephen AdamsTelegraph [UK]August 28th, 2012Dozens of couples are flying to the US every year to choose the sex of their babies, a practice banned in Britain three years ago.
Madison Heights Woman Recalls Forced Sterilization at Training Centerby Ray ReedThe News and AdvanceAugust 18th, 2012In 1959, the state of Virginia sterilized Sarah Pack Wiley, having deemed her mentally deficient and wanting to prevent her from having children.
Euroscience Open Forum 2012: DNA Gene Testing 'Will Screen Out Lovers'by Telegraph ReportersThe TelegraphJuly 13th, 2012A British professor has suggested that couples will soon be able to choose their life partner solely based on the compatibility of their genes instead of through love.
European Scientists on Direct-to-Consumer Gene Tests: Thumbs Downby Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitcal TimesJuly 13th, 2012Two scientific advisory groups warn that direct-to-consumer gene testing “has little clinical value” and the “potential to be harmful.”
Womb Transplants Could Be a Reality in Britain Within Two Years: Surgeonby Rebecca SmithTelegraphJuly 12th, 2012Some doctors say womb transplants would be a more 'ethical solution' to infertility than seeking a surrogate.
One of Five Million: Contemplating Fertility Treatment and Embryo Selectionby Jessica CussinsBiopolitical TimesJuly 12th, 2012Five million people have been born using in vitro fertilization. Though the technology has become safer and less expensive, it warrants attention because of the open door it provides for embryo selection.
Government Launches Consultation on Future of UK Human Fertilisation and Tissue Regulatorsby Ayesha AhmadBioNewsJuly 2nd, 2012The UK Government has launched a consultation on the future of the agency that regulates assisted reproduction.
Nuffield Council Gives Green Light to the Prevention of Inherited Mitochondrial Diseaseby Antony Blackburn-StarzaBioNewsJune 12th, 2012The UK-based Nuffield Council on Bioethics has declared that the benefits of new techniques which aim to prevent the transmission of faulty mtDNA from mother to child outweigh any risks.
Human Genetics Commission Publish Final Reportby Rebecca HillBioNewsJune 7th, 2012The Human Genetics Commission has published its final report, which marks the end of its 12 years as an advisory body to the Government.
Revealed: How More and More Britons are Paying Indian Women to Become Surrogate Mothersby Shekhar BhatiaThe Telegraph (UK)May 26th, 2012The sheer scale of the “baby factory” phenomenon is now causing concern with the Indian government. There are up to 1,000 unregulated clinics, comprising an industry worth as much as £1.5 billion a year.
Artificial DNA Presents Real Dangersby Daniel SharpBiopolitical TimesMay 2nd, 2012The creation of “artificial DNA” has generated substantial media buzz. The untold story behind the hype is about the new risks synthetic biology presents.
Tens of Thousands of Children Have Their DNA Stored by Police, Even if They are Not Charged With Any Crime by Matt BlakeDaily Mail (UK)April 27th, 2012Some police forces are collecting DNA from children as young as ten. Campaigners brand the practice 'bonkers.'
Anonymous DNA? No, It's Notby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesApril 19th, 2012An article in Nature Genetics essentially says that keeping aggregated DNA data anonymous is impossible, which raises important questions about privacy and the conduct of research.
UK Aid Helps to Fund Forced Sterilisation of India's Poorby Gethin ChamberlainGuardianApril 14th, 2012Money from the Department for International Development has helped pay for a controversial program that has led to miscarriages and even deaths after botched operations.
British Man 'Fathered 600 Children' at Own Fertility Clinicby Rebecca SmithTelegraphApril 8th, 2012Research by two men conceived at a London-based fertility clinic suggests that the Austrian biologist who founded it provided two thirds of the donated sperm.
Scientists Rewrite Rules of Human Reproduction by Steve ConnorThe IndependentApril 7th, 2012UK scientists claim that lab-grown egg cells could revolutionize fertility and banish menopause.
Egg and Sperm Donors: HFEA in Drive to Increase Numbersby Jane HughesBBC NewsApril 4th, 2012The UK fertility regulator is seeking to reduce the taboo around egg and sperm donation, but critics say egg donation is an invasive process, and women should be warned of the risks.
Calls for Inquiry Into 'Astonishing' DNA Error by Paul PeacheyThe IndependentMarch 31st, 2012The second embarrassment admitted this month by Britain's biggest private forensic science laboratory.
Britain's Biobank Is Open for Businessby Angela SainiScienceMarch 29th, 2012As the UK Biobank opens for business with samples and health data from half a million people, GeneWatch UK and others maintain that genetic databases are white elephants with few scientific benefits.
New Thriller about Eugenics, “the Dirty Little Secret of the Anglo-American Intellectual Elite”by Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesMarch 15th, 2012How should we understand the attraction of eugenics for liberals and leftists in the early twentieth century?
The Case Against DNAby William LangleyThe TelegraphMarch 6th, 2012Genetic profiling was once hailed as a magical tool to catch criminals. So why is it now in danger of being discredited?
Company Unveils DNA Sequencing Device Meant to Be Portable, Disposable and Cheapby Andrew PollackNew York TimesFebruary 18th, 2012A British startup is commercializing a USB-sized disposable DNA sequencing machine.
IVF Clinics Told to Cut Multiple Births to 10%BBCFebruary 9th, 2012IVF clinics have been told that no more than 10% of births should be twins or triplets by regulators.
Treatment for Blood Disease Is Gene Therapy Landmarkby Nicholas WadeNew York TimesDecember 10th, 2011Hemophilia B is the first well-known disease to appear treatable by gene therapy, a technique with a 20-year record of almost unbroken failure.
Surrogacy Children Caught in Legal Limboby Carl O'BrienIrish TimesNovember 19th, 2011Children born through surrogacy to Irish couples abroad risk getting caught in legal limbo, left either stateless or unable to get an Irish passport.
UK Supreme Court Upholds Gene Patentby Martin TurnerBioNewsNovember 14th, 2011In what appears to be the end of a long-running legal saga, the UK's Supreme Court found in favor of a patent for a gene and the protein sequence it encodes.
HFEA Triples the Going Rate for Women’s Eggs in UK by Doug PetBiopolitical TimesOctober 27th, 2011The UK’s Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority set new compensation rates for sperm and egg providers that are drastically higher than previously allowed.
What price parenthood?by Jeremy LauranceThe IndependentOctober 20th, 2011UK's Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority tripled the amount that women can be paid from egg donation to £750 per cycle.
EU court: No patents for some stem cell techniquesby Maria ChengBloomberg BusinessweekOctober 18th, 2011The European Union's top court ruled Tuesday that scientists cannot patent stem cell techniques that use human embryos.
More on Cash for Eggsby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesOctober 13th, 2011The Nuffield Council on Bioethics has issued a report about the provision of human bodily material for medicine and for research, including the issue of payment for gametes.
NHS ignores gene patents, experts sayby Clive CooksonFinancial TimesAugust 5th, 2011Genetic testing laboratories in the National Health Service are deliberately ignoring most patents on DNA.
Stark warning on fertility for older womenby Martin BeckfordTelegraph [UK]July 18th, 2011An academic journal article states that “IVF cannot compensate for delays in childbearing” because of the biological effects of ageing.
UK Drops DNA Tests For Refugees And Asylum Seekers[United Kingdom]National Public RadioJune 17th, 2011Britain has dropped a policy of using DNA tests to identify the nationality of African refugees and asylum seekers after criticism that there is no scientific merit to the practice.
Francis Galton: The man who drew up the 'ugly map' of Britainby Steve JonesBBC NewsJune 16th, 2011One hundred years after the death of Francis Galton, the "father of eugenics," geneticists are increasingly baffled by the nature versus nurture debate. Does the question mean anything in the first place?
Birthday Honours: Test-tube baby pioneer knightedBBC NewsJune 10th, 2011IVF pioneer and Nobel prize winner Robert Edwards is among several leading health specialists to be knighted in this year's Queen's Birthday Honours.
Supreme Court: DNA database retention regs are unlawful[United Kingdom]by Lewis PageThe RegisterMay 18th, 2011However the court, noting that Parliament is considering the matter, has declined to specify any remedy for the situation.
ESHRE on Reproductive Tourism: Be Niceby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesApril 26th, 2011The ESHRE "Good practice guide for cross-border reproductive care" is better on defining issues than solving problems.
The cost of fertility treatment 'tourism'[UK]BBC NewsApril 24th, 2011BBC Radio Scotland's The Investigation programme examines the increasing number of couples travelling abroad to seek infertility treatment.
Another Expansion of DNA Databases: South Korea Collects DNA from Labor Unionistsby Jillian TheilBiopolitical TimesApril 14th, 2011South Korea is expanding its DNA database to include labor activists, which is proving controversial, while the US and other countries try to define the scope of their own.
Pre-pregnancy genetic screening backed by government advisers[United Kingdom]by James MeikleThe Guardian (UK)April 6th, 2011Tests will allow couples or individuals to assess their own risk of carrying genetic conditions such as cystic fibrosis.
Scotland Yard "seduced for years by science and DNA"by Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesMarch 29th, 2011Scotland Yard has admitted that basic errors, apparently arising from an over-reliance on forensic DNA, allowed a multiple burglar and rapist to stay free for ten years after he should have been caught, preying on at least another 146 victims.
Profits, Princes and Police DNA Databasesby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesMarch 16th, 2011A new investigation reveals disturbing commercial pressures to establish forensic DNA databases that may go well beyond legal limits in Europe and the US.
Palace denies 'shameful' database link[United Kingdom]by Matthew D'Arcypublicservice.co.ukMarch 11th, 2011A deal signed under Tony Blair's government to help the United Arab Emirates build a DNA database of its entire population must be scrapped, human rights and genetics bodies have warned.
Police DNA database to be rolled back in Britainby Helen Wallace, Biopolitical Times guest contributorBiopolitical Times guest contributorMarch 10th, 2011The British government will remove the genetic profiles of one million innocent people from the National DNA Database.
Courts 'will reject test secrecy'[The United Kingdom]by Paul RinconBBC News February 24th, 2011There is a serious mismatch between the government's aim to commercialise forensic science and the requirement of courts for openness, according to a top forensic expert.
Forced sterilization considered in a UK court by Doug PetBiopolitical TimesFebruary 17th, 2011A British special court delayed its ruling on whether or not a woman with “significant learning disabilities” should be forcibly sterilized.
Is forced sterilization ever OK?[Interview with CGS's Doug Pet]by Tracy Clark-FlorySalonFebruary 16th, 2011A U.K. court considers the question in the case of a pregnant woman with significant learning disabilities.
Woman with learning difficulties could be forcibly sterilised[United Kingdom]by Tim RossThe TelegraphFebruary 14th, 2011A woman with learning difficulties could be forcibly sterilised after she gives birth this week to stop her becoming pregnant again.
DNA profiles to be deleted from police database[United Kingdom]BBC NewsFebruary 11th, 2011Following a critical European Court of Human Rights ruling, the UK will make wide-ranging changes to its DNA forensics policies.
Remember the Raelians? They're back, pushing GM crops by Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesJanuary 31st, 2011The pro-cloning cult is lending its support to a UK government push for genetically modified food.
Feds to Pay States to Expand Forensic DNA Databases?by Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesJanuary 26th, 2011A newly introduced bill would incentivize states to expand the collection of DNA from people arrested for certain crimes, before trial let alone conviction.
Will the UK legalize paying women for their eggs?by Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesJanuary 19th, 2011The UK is starting a public consultation that is widely considered to be an attempt to evade the ban on paying for eggs and sperm.
Lisa Jardine starts egg donor compensation discussion[United Kingdom]by James GallagherBBC NewsJanuary 17th, 2011The UK's assisted reproduction regulatory agency has opened a public consultation about payments for sperm and eggs.
A quiet battle for life: IVF regulator aims to show its worth[United Kingdom]by Amelia GentlemanThe Guardian (UK)January 10th, 2011The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority was one of 192 quasi-autonomous non-governmental organisations listed for abolition in October.
Grim News for Assisted Reproduction Regulatory Bodies in Canada and the UKby Jillian TheilBiopolitical TimesDecember 1st, 2010The UK's HFEA is on the chopping block due to a new reform bill, while the chair of Canada's AHRAC is under scrutiny for questionable performance.
Fertility’s Mega-Mallby Doug PetBiopolitical TimesNovember 11th, 2010The “Fertility Show” in London literally displays how the ART industry is commidfying fertility.
Abolishing (and Replacing) the UK HFEAby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesOctober 28th, 2010The UK Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) is to be abolished, as part of a massive governmental reorganization, and its responsibilities reassigned.
Government scraps 192 quangosby Polly CurtisThe GuardianOctober 20th, 2010The British government will close or substantially cut back hundreds of its agencies. Among those being scrapped is the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority, which oversees embryo research and fertility treatment.
Nuffield Council voices critical concerns on DTC gene testsby Doug PetBiopolitical TimesOctober 14th, 2010The Nuffield Council on Bioethics announces its report calling for comprehensive oversight and consumer protections around DTC gene tests.
Abolition of HFEA 'won't save anything'BBC NewsSeptember 24th, 2010The former chair of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, one of many publicly funded non-governmental advisory bodies in the UK that may be scrapped, analyses the gap the abolition of the body will leave.
International Survey of ART Releasedby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesSeptember 23rd, 2010The International Federation of Fertility Societies has just released Surveillance 2010, the 5th edition of a triennial global survey of the assisted reproduction industry.
Time to Clean Up After Cloning Cattleby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesAugust 17th, 2010The USDA is still committed to promoting livestock cloning, but recent bad publicity makes it clear that the technology remains unpopular, unnecessary, and unethical.
"Weak and Meaningless" Guidelines for UK DTC Testsby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesAugust 10th, 2010The UK Human Genetics Commission's "A Common Framework of Principles for direct-to-consumer genetic testing services" rejects government regulation and relies entirely on voluntary guidelines.
Cloned beef in food chain spreads alarm in Britainby Raphael G. SatterAssociated PressAugust 4th, 2010News that meat and milk from the offspring of cloned cattle — illegal to sell in without proper authorization — may have made their way into the food chain has set hands wringing in the UK.
UK embryo agency faces the axeby Daniel CresseyNatureAugust 3rd, 2010Coalition government promises to abolish respected regulator in effort to cut back on quangos.
Top IVF doctor defends offering help for parents to pick babies' sexby Lisa AdamsDaily RecordJuly 29th, 2010MEET the doctor who is making Scots' dreams of designing the perfect baby come true.
Hundreds of IVF embryos donated 'without consent'by Rebecca SmithThe TelegraphJuly 22nd, 2010Hundreds of British couples could have children that are biologically theirs living with other parents around Europe or across the world without knowing, it has emerged.
A People's History of the Human Genomeby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesJune 30th, 2010Genewatch UK marked the 10th anniversary of the Human Genome Project announcement by publishing an extraordinary History with important current policy implications.
Environmentalists Try to Ban Release of Synthetic Life Forms into The Wild [UK]by Steve ConnorThe IndependentMay 24th, 2010Environmentalists last week sought to use the UN Convention on Biological Diversity to push for moratorium on release of synthetic life forms into the wild.
Incentives for Donation of Human Bodily Material?by Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesMay 10th, 2010The Nuffield Council on Bioethics has launched a public consultation about donating, or perhaps selling, human bodily material.
Watchdog under fire as number of IVF blunders soarsby Jo MacfarlaneThe Daily MailApril 24th, 2010Reported mistakes at UK IVF clinics increased from 182 in 2007-08 to 334 in 2008-09, prompting calls for stronger enforcement of regulations.
The perils of cheap fertility drugs[Commentary]by Professor Bill LedgerBBC NewsApril 21st, 2010Multiple births pose a health risk to both the mother and her babies, and put financial strain on health services.
British group weighs paying organ donorsAssociated PressApril 19th, 2010An influential British medical think tank is tackling the question of how far society should go to boost the number of organ and tissue donors, and is weighing a proposal to pay for body parts.
Pretending to be Toughby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesApril 19th, 2010The English forensic DNA database has been dragged into the current UK election campaign with false accusations that supporting reform means being "soft" on crime.
Struggling to Control Fertility Tourismby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesApril 17th, 2010Several countries are trying to figure out what to do about their citizens who go abroad for assisted reproduction procedures to evade local prohibitions (or just to save money).
Family become first to have DNA sequenced for non-medical reasonsby Mark HendersonThe Times (London)April 16th, 2010A family of four has become the first in which every member's genome has been sequenced for non-medical reasons, opening a debate about the ethics of analysing the DNA of minors.
The dangers of growing DNA databasesby Osagie K. ObasogieLos Angeles TimesApril 9th, 2010The practice of retaining genetic samples from people arrested for a crime but not convicted is growing in the U.S. It has serious human rights implications.
Tories give up plan to block police retention of DNA samples - for now[United Kingdom]by Francis Elliott and Richard Ford The TimesApril 8th, 2010The Conservative Party has abandoned attempts to block the retention of DNA samples, to pre-empt a Labour campaign leading up to elections.
Couples Flock to Eastern Europe for Cheaper IVFby Jo Willey and Nick FaggeDaily ExpressApril 5th, 2010Thousands of childless older British women desperate to be mothers are flocking to eastern Europe for IVF
Couples who pay surrogate mothers could lose right to raise the child [United Kingdom]by The GuardianDenis CampbellApril 5th, 2010High court could refuse recognition of parental rights to people who flout law by paying disproportionate fees to a surrogate mother overseas.
Sex selection: Getting the baby you wantby Amanda MitchisonThe GuardianApril 3rd, 2010The author meets couples traveling from the UK and heading abroad – where the sex selection business is booming.
Egg Raffles and Shadow Markets: The Fertility Industry Goes Global - and Skirts Lawsby Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesMarch 23rd, 2010The baby business has become a transnational enterprise. As in other aspects of global commerce, the lowest level of labor and consumer protection tends to prevail.
IVF doctors to raffle human egg [United Kingdom]by Lois RogersThe TimesMarch 14th, 2010A fertility clinic in London, partnering with one in the US, is raffling a human egg to promote its new "baby profiling" service, which circumvents UK laws.
Commons committee rejects six-year DNA records plan [United Kingdom]by Alan TravisThe GuardianMarch 8th, 2010A report published in advance of a key parliamentary vote says DNA profiles of innocent people should be kept for no longer than three years.
Fertility drugs on sale in supermarketby Rebecca SmithThe TelegraphMarch 3rd, 2010UK women will soon be able to buy fertility drugs for IVF treatment at a supermarket.
UK Feminist Campaign: No2Eggsploitationby Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesDecember 15th, 2009The UK's fertility watchdog agency is considering revoking the rule that limits payments to women who provide eggs for other people's IVF treatment. A network of British feminists objects.
Is it right to pay women for their eggs?by Clare MurphyBBC NewsDecember 9th, 2009The UK fertility regulator is considering offering more generous compensation to egg and sperm donors
Are UK Cops Pushing People Into the Pool? by Osagie ObasogieBiopolitical TimesNovember 27th, 2009A new report from the UK suggests that police may be taking a new tactic: arresting people for the sole purpose of getting their DNA.
From schoolboy squabble to DNA database in one easy step - if you're blackby Fiona HamiltonThe Times (UK)November 24th, 2009A report by the UK Human Genetics Commission states that over three quarters of black men aged between 18 and 35 have their DNA profiles posted on the national database.
Police making arrests 'just to gather DNA samples' [United Kingdom]BBC newsNovember 24th, 2009UK police officers have made arrests just to get people on to the DNA database, a retired police superintendent has claimed.
Womb Transplants in Two Years?by Osagie ObasagieBiopolitical TimesNovember 2nd, 2009A reality check greets British fertility researchers' claim that human womb transplants will be available in as little as two years.
The rise and fall of hybrids in the UKby Jesse ReynoldsBiopolitical TimesOctober 20th, 2009The remarkable push by UK researchers for animal-human hybrid embryos is another strange tale of science politics and science policy.
Suspects' DNA data plans changed [UK]BBC NewsOctober 19th, 2009The UK government has dropped plans to give ministers wide powers on holding innocent people's DNA data on record.
Google Babyby Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesOctober 9th, 2009An Israeli documentary offers an excruciatingly up-close look at India's booming global surrogacy industry.
Embryo research driven out of Britainby Steve ConnorThe IndependentOctober 5th, 2009Scientists abandon plan to develop stem cells from human-animal hybrid embryos after funding dries up
Experts condemn asylum DNA tests BBC NewsSeptember 30th, 2009Leading scientists have criticised as "naive" and scientifically flawed DNA tests for asylum seekers to establish where they come from.
It’s All Fun and Games Until Someone Fails a DNA Ancestry Testby Osagie ObasogieBiopolitical TimesSeptember 30th, 2009Officials in the United Kingdom have launched the Human Provenance Pilot Project in an attempt to use genetic technologies to determine the nationality of asylum seekers.
Genotyping Childrenby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesSeptember 29th, 2009Twice in the last few weeks Anne Wojcicki, of 23andMe, has strongly defended genotyping children, an increasingly controversial practice.
Human tissue can be taken for human-animal embryo experiments without consentby Laura DonnellyThe Telegraph (UK)September 12th, 2009Tens of thousands of samples of human tissue will be offered for use in controversial human/animal hybrid embryo research without the consent of the patients who donated them.
DNA pioneer calls for innocent to be taken off databaseby Ben Padley and Ellen BranaghPress AssociationSeptember 10th, 2009The man who discovered DNA fingerprinting demanded the removal of innocent people from the United Kingdom database.
The Gray Areas at the Edges of Regulationby Pete ShanksBiopolitical TimesAugust 26th, 2009The UK experience with regulation continues to offer lessons, as sperm sellers are arrested, US companies promote sex selection to Britons, and an MP has his DNA removed from the police database.
US clinic offers British couples the chance to choose the sex of their childby Alice FishburnThe Times (UK)August 22nd, 2009A new US clinic is appealing to British couples who want to pick the sex of their next child - a process that is banned in the United Kingdom.
Pay donors to end the shortage of IVF eggs, says UK watchdogby Mark HendersonThe Times (UK)July 27th, 2009A longstanding ban on selling sperm and eggs should be reconsidered to address a national shortage of donors, the head of the UK Government's fertility watchdog says.
IVF discounts beat cash rewards for research eggs New ScientistJuly 12th, 2009Discounts for IVF are helping lure women to provide eggs for cloning-based stem cell research
'Hundreds' going abroad for IVFby Emma WilkinsonBBC NewsJune 29th, 2009Hundreds of UK couples travel to the continent every month for fertility treatment because they cannot get it at home.
Women 'unaware of risks of older motherhood' , report will warnby Kate DevlinThe TelegraphJune 13th, 2009Too few women are aware of the risks of becoming an older mother, a UK report will warn
Fertility clinics to recruit more lesbians as egg donors for IVFby Sophie GoodchildEvening StandardJune 9th, 2009Fertility clinics are targeting lesbians as egg providers after research found higher IVF success rates than among heterosexual women
Surrogacy in India: The Sun Still Never Sets by Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesMay 29th, 2009Hundreds of Britons are hiring Indian women for contract pregnancies.
Investigation: Surrogate baby delivered every 48 hoursby Shekhar BhatiaThe Evening StandardMay 20th, 2009An Evening Standard investigation today exposes the boom in Indian surrogate babies for childless Western couples.
"What color is the baby?" Green?by Jesse ReynoldsBiopolitical TimesMay 13th, 2009Race has a remarkable impact on media coverage of accidental switches of gametes or embryos in fertility clinics.
Scientific American on Regulating Designer-baby Technologies by Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesMay 8th, 2009The editors of one of the most prestigious American popular science magazines call for greater oversight of the baby business.
Parents 'refused genetic tests'by Clare MurphyBBC NewsApril 22nd, 2009Children are being born with severe genetic abnormalities because their parents are being refused funding to screen their embryos, those working in the field have claimed.
The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill 2008A Commentaryby David KingApril 15th, 2009The director of Human Genetics Alert offers an analysis of the UK's new law governing human genetic and reproductive technologies.
IVF watchdog to warn of birth defect risksby Aidan JonesThe GuardianMarch 21st, 2009Couples seeking IVF treatment are to be warned for the first time that their children have a higher risk of suffering birth defects, disability and life-threatening conditions.
Even before the octuplets, there was one-at-a-time-dot-org by Marcy DarnovskyBiopolitical TimesFebruary 27th, 2009The US assisted reproduction industry creates far more multiple births - with serious risk to the babies and mothers - than do clinics in countries with regulation and oversight.
Always falling behindby Jesse ReynoldsBiopolitical TimesJanuary 23rd, 2009A new report concludes that the US is still the world leader in stem cell research. Although likely true, the report should be viewed skeptically.
Baby Selected To Be Free From Breast Cancer Geneby Kate DevlinTelegraphDecember 19th, 2008The first baby in Britain genetically screened to be free from a potentially deadly breast cancer gene will be born next week.
DNA Databases: Another Human Rights Violation in the U.S. Criminal Justice System? by Osagie K. ObasogieBiopolitical TimesDecember 9th, 2008A ruling last week out of the European Court of Human Rights suggests that the US might be engaging in a human rights violation by collecting and retaining DNA profiles from arrestees never convicted of a crime.
European Court Rules Against British DNA Databaseby Sarah LyallThe New York TimesDecember 4th, 2008The European Court of Human Rights ruled unanimously on Thursday that Britain's policy of gathering and storing the fingerprints and DNA of all criminal suspects was a violation of the human right to privacy.
UK Grants All the Scientists' Wishesby Jesse ReynoldsBiopolitical TimesOctober 29th, 2008The bill overhauling the United Kingdom's oversight of assisted reproduction and embryo research granted researchers essentially all that they asked for, and then some.
IVF boom: British births top 10,000 in a year for the first timeby Jenny HopeDaily MailOctober 9th, 2008The number of women having successful IVF treatment in the UK has topped 10,000 for the first time.
DNA Databases Run Amokby Jesse ReynoldsBiopolitical TimesAugust 11th, 2008Genetic forensics may assist in solving crimes, but the too-common assumption of the technique's infallibility makes it prone to implementation errors - seen most recently in the UK and Australia.
[United Kingdom] Brown delays embryo billby Ross LydallThe ScotsmanJuly 11th, 2008UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown postponed until autumn the vote on the bill to overhaul the oversight of assisted reproduction and embryo research.
Scientists Find Hybrid Embryos Easy to Make by Clive CooksonFinancial TimesJune 20th, 2008Scientists at Newcastle University in the UK have already produced almost 300 hybrid embryos, by inserting human DNA into cow eggs, since their controversial research project started in January.
IVF 30 Years On by Olga CraigTelegraph [UK]June 16th, 2008When the first test-tube baby was born, it wasn't just the beginning of a new life but of a whole new approach to infertility. But what few women realise is that IVF treatment has become increasingly aggressive: so much so that there are very real risks involved.
Loophole in Embryology Bill could allow cloning without new legislationby Mark HendersonThe TimesJune 14th, 2008A loophole in the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill could permit some reproductive cloning without the need for fresh primary legislation, the Government has admitted.
Cloning the Deadby Jesse ReynoldsBiopolitical TimesJune 3rd, 2008The UK is now proposing allowing scientists to try to create clonal embryos from the tissues of dead people, most of whom have not given their consent.
MPs Reject 'Saviour Sibling' BanBBC NewsMay 23rd, 2008A bid to stop parents having "saviour siblings" - babies selected to provide genetic material for seriously ill relatives - has been defeated by the United Kingdom Parliament.
UK's Prime Minister Brown vs. scientistsby Jesse ReynoldsBiopolitical TimesMay 22nd, 2008Like so many writings advocating cloning-based stem cell research, UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown's recent op ed drifts to distortion and hyperbole.
UK Scientists to Combine Human, Animal Embryos[Interviews CGS's Marcy Darnovsky]CNN Headline NewsMay 21st, 2008CNN's Glenn Beck on cybrids.
British Lawmakers Allow Hybrid Human-Animal Embryosby Kitty Donaldson and Mark DeenBloombergMay 19th, 2008U.K. lawmakers voted to let scientists use stem cells derived from hybrid human-animal embryos in medical research.
Robert Winston on the UK's fertility billby Jesse ReynoldsBiopolitical TimesMay 13th, 2008Assisted reproduction pioneer Lord Robert Winston had some surprising words about the UK's controversial bill to overhaul its oversight of the reproduction industry and stem cell research.
Public interest group criticizes creation of first genetically modified human embryo Center for Genetics and Society calls for effective regulationMay 12th, 2008A small group of researchers decided on its own to overstep a key ethical boundary that has been observed around the world, with no discussion by the public, the media, or policy makers.
Displaying 1-300 of 390  
Next >> 
Last Page » 
« Show Complete List » 


home | overview | blog | publications| about us | donate | newsletter | press room | privacy policy

CGS • 1936 University Ave, Suite 350, Berkeley, CA 94704 • • (p) 1.510.665.7760 • (F) 1.510.665.8760