Acquiring human embryos for stem-cell research
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Human tissue engineering and regenerative medicine may be considerably advanced by embryonic stem-cell research and cell line development, to provide preventive means, cures and treatment strategies for a range of debilitating conditions and injuries. Research may result in embryos from which stem-cells are derived losing viability, which offends some religious convictions. The different status religions and laws may attribute to embryos serves different purposes and results from different approaches. Neither need depend on, nor impose itself on, the other. Embryos surplus to IVF patients' needs may be donated to research with appropriate consent. In some circumstances, it may be ethical to ask patients to make their fresh embryos available for research. Prohibitions against deliberately creating embryos for research purposes are common, but not universally adopted, and are being challenged. Women who donate ova require information about risks, which for women considering donation for research may not be balanced by compensating benefits.
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