Wednesday evening’s reports of the creation of synthetic embryos using stem cells brought this area of research right to the top of the media agenda and lots of journalists were in touch with questions about the regulation of these techniques.
A group of scientists, legal and bioethics experts, regulators and funders are working hard to try and address any gaps or ambiguities in current regulation of human stem cell-based embryo models so that there is clear guidance as this field of science develops. This work has taken the form of a project called Governance of Stem Cell-Based Embryo Models (G-SCBEM) and we hosted some of the group at an SMC briefing where they were able to outline why they think this work is needed, what this project will look like and what they hope to achieve with their recommendations for research. Please note they did not present any guideline or recommendations.
Prof Roger Sturmey, Professor of Reproductive Medicine, Hull York Medical School & Senior Research Fellow – Maternal & Fetal Health, University of Manchester and Chair of this project
Sandy Starr, Deputy Director of the Progress Educational Trust (PET)
Christina Rozeik, Co-ordinator, Cambridge Reproduction