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About Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, & Intersex Communities & Human Biotechnology


New genetic and reproductive technologies affect LGBTQI communities in exceptional ways.

Some of these are beneficial. For example, advances in assisted reproductive technologies enable a growing number of gay men and lesbians to become parents of biologically related children.

However, some advocates of reproductive cloning assert that gays and lesbians in particular should support it, because it would allow same-sex couples to have children that are genetically related only to a member of the couple, free of "external" DNA. Of course, such techniques do nothing to address the underlying issues of inequality and homophobia that plague society.

Genetic theories play as strong a role in shaping our social and individual identities as they do in shaping our families. Recent years have seen a resurgence of assumptions that complex human behaviors, including sexual orientation, are simply products of our genes. Though scientists have yet to find a genetic marker for homosexuality, many continue to try. Such genetic determinism and reductionism open the door to new forms of discrimination.



Israeli Parents, Indian Surrogates, a Nepali Earthquake, and "Cheap White Eggs"by Diane Beeson, Biopolitical Times guest contributorFebruary 8th, 2016A recent Radiolab episode reveals rarely examined layers of complexity in the typically fairy-tale accounts of cross-border surrogacy.
Expert: Parents often won't take surrogate kids with defectsby Rod McGuirkAssociated PressFebruary 3rd, 2016Baby Gammy, left by intended parents with his poor surrogate mother in Thailand, was one of several cases of surrogate children abandoned, an expert told a parliamentary inquiry.
Italy Considers Civil Unions — But May Add Penalties for Surrogacyby Trudy RingThe AdvocateJanuary 22nd, 2016As Italy’s Parliament prepares to debate a civil unions bill, some lawmakers have proposed an amendment punishing couples who use overseas surrogates to become parents.
'Somebody has to be the icebreaker': Aussies seeking babies turn to Cambodiaby Lindsay MurdochSydney Morning HeraldOctober 30th, 2015A booming surrogacy industry chased out of Thailand and Nepal has established itself in Cambodia, where human trafficking laws and a lack of surrogacy regulation could produce fraught legal battles.
Expanding Notions of Discrimination: Genetic Information & Competitive Sportsby Craig KlugmanBioethics.netOctober 16th, 2015The International Olympic Committee has new hormonal guidelines to segregate athletes into two competitive sex categories.
Feminists, get ready: pregnancy and abortion are about to be disruptedby Eleanor RobertsonThe GuardianOctober 12th, 2015A clinical trial of uterine transplants will begin soon in the UK. Are artificial wombs on the horizon?
No, Scientists Have Not Found the 'Gay Gene'by Ed YongThe AtlanticOctober 10th, 2015A widely reported study purporting to find epigenetic marks associated with sexual orientation in men is an underpowered fishing expedition that used inappropriate statistics.
Gay or Straight? Saliva Test Can Predict Male Sexual Orientationby Jessica HamzelouNew ScientistOctober 8th, 2015Many scientists have expressed caution over the results, and concerns over potential misuse have led the lead researcher to quit the project entirely.
UK Womb Transplants: 5 Ethical Issuesby Rachael RettnerLive ScienceOctober 5th, 2015The procedure would expose both patient and developing fetus to autoimmune suppressants, use uteruses from deceased donors, and require that clinical patients have a "long-term partner."
Womb transplants given UK go-aheadBBCSeptember 30th, 2015Ten women will be chosen for a clinical trial that will transplant a donated uterus, monitor organ acceptance for a year, and initiate up to two IVF pregnancies before removing the transplant.
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