Giving robots personhood; Changing embryo research rules; First three parent baby born; A place without human dignity and more…
January 20, 2017 Donate to CBHD
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RESOURCES & ANNOUNCEMENTS
Academy of Fellows 2017: Bioethics & Being Human
BIOETHICS & BEING HUMAN EVENT
Join The Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity for a free, informative bioethics event on Friday, February 3, 2017 from 5:30 to 7:30pm in Hinkson Hall of the Rodine Building on the campus of Trinity International University. Dr. Dan Treier, Professor of Theology at Wheaton College will present “The Limits of Being Human: An Evangelical Account of Our Finitude.” And, Dr. Dennis Hollinger, Professor of Christian Ethics and President of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary will present “Biotechnologies and Human Nature: What We Should Not Change in Who We Are.” Coffee will be provided.
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Genetic & Reproductive Technologies Conference
CALL FOR PROPOSALS: CBHD SUMMER CONFERENCE
Paper and poster proposals for presentation at CBHD's summer conference, Genetic & Reproductive Technologies, are being accepted through February 15, 2017. All serious proposals relevant to the study of bioethics are welcome. To be considered for presentation, contributed papers and posters must be submitted as abstracts 250-300 words along with a CV/resume. 
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OTHER BIOETHICS EVENTS
SERIES ON BIOETHICAL ISSUES FROM A BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE
Trinity Graduate School
January 24, February 21, & March 21, 2017
Deerfield, IL
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CONFERENCE ON MEDICINE & RELIGION
Re-Enchanting Medicine
JW Marriott Galleria
March 24 – 26, 2017
Houston, TX
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NEWS HIGHLIGHTS
First Baby Born Using 3-Parent Technique to Treat Infertility
(New Scientist) — This is the first baby to be born using a particular “3-parent-baby” technique to treat infertility. The girl was born on 5 January in a fertility clinic in Kiev, Ukraine. “With the help of this method, a 34-year-old woman who had suffered from infertility for more than 15 years gave birth to a healthy baby that’s genetically her own,” said a statement from the Nadiya clinic. The clinic’s director, Valery Zukin, and his team used a mitochondrial transfer technique that creates embryos that carry the chromosomes of two parents, but the mitochondrial DNA of a donor …
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Is It Time for Embryo Research Rules to Be Changed
(Quartz) — Experts are renewing calls to allow experiments on embryos beyond 14 days of development, saying it would drive medical breakthroughs. Research on human embryos can only happen under a licence in the UK and it is currently illegal to keep them alive in laboratories for more than two weeks after fertilisation. Until recently, this cut-off was almost irrelevant in terms of viability since science had not found a way to physically support life in the lab beyond about a week. But researchers have found a way to chemically mimic the womb which would allow an early stage embryo to continue to develop for longer – at least 13 days after fertilisation, but potentially much more. …
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How the Response to Zika Failed Millions
(New York Times) — The W.H.O. ended the emergency status in November, but the consequences of the outbreak will be with us for years to come. So maybe now is a good time to ask: How’d we do? Not so great, according to more than a dozen public health experts who were asked to reflect on the response. The battle was a series of missed opportunities, they said, that damaged still-uncounted numbers of babies across a whole hemisphere. …
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Greek Island Refugee Camp a Place without ‘Human Dignity’: U.S. Doctor
(Reuters) — A camp on the Greek island of Lesbos housing more than 2,500 migrants denies people the most basic human dignity in bitterly cold winter weather, a doctor working at the camp said. Diane Sampson, an American paediatrician, said she had treated desperate patients at the Moria camp suffering from frostbite, shivering with cold and drenched by snow and rain that had washed through the flimsy tents they are staying in …
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Sky-High Prices for Orphan Drugs Slam American Families and Insurers
(Kaiser Health News) — Cerezyme is an “orphan drug” which means it was created to treat a rare disease, one that affects fewer than 200,000 people in the U.S. The orphan drug program overseen by the Food and Drug Administration is loaded with government incentives and has helped hundreds of thousands of patients like Luke feel better or even stay alive. But the 34-year-old program has opened the door to almost unlimited price tags and created incentives among drugmakers to cash in, and to cash in repeatedly, a Kaiser Health News investigation shows …
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Give Robots ‘Personhood’ Status, EU Committee Argues
(The Guardian) — The European parliament has urged the drafting of a set of regulations to govern the use and creation of robots and artificial intelligence, including a form of “electronic personhood” to ensure rights and responsibilities for the most capable AI. In a 17-2 vote, with two abstentions, the parliament’s legal affairs committee passed the report, which outlines one possible framework for regulation …
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The Stem Cell Revolution Is Coming–Slowly
(New York Times) — The breakthrough sidestepped the embryo controversy, offering researchers an unlimited supply of stem cells. Dr. Yamanaka shared the 2012 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for reprogramming mature cells into what are now called induced pluripotent stem cells, or iPS cells. Still, the march toward new treatments has been halting. Dr. Yamanaka directs Kyoto University’s Center for iPS Cell Research and Application. He also leads a small research lab at the Gladstone Institutes, affiliated with the University of California, San Francisco, where his group studies the molecular mechanisms that underlie pluripotency and the factors that induce reprogramming. I interviewed him recently in San Francisco. Our conversation has been edited for length and clarity …
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New Rules Ease Consent Requirements for Scientists Using Patient Specimens
(STAT News) — Scientists spoke, the feds listened: With only two days left in office, the Obama administration on Wednesday issued new rules intended to protect people who participate in scientific research, stepping back from proposals that would have imposed significant new regulatory requirements on scientists. In particular, the administration abandoned a proposal that would have required researchers to obtain written consent before using cells, blood, tumor samples, DNA, or other “biospecimens” obtained during medical procedures, even when the samples were stripped of the person’s name and other identifying information, or obtained from earlier studies the person had participated in …
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Note: News stories and events do not necessarily represent the Center’s views. For additional commentary on many of the issues they raise, please see the CBHD web site at www.cbhd.org. Please visit www.bioethics.com for daily posts on bioethics news and issues.
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