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Clone wars

Charles Foster examines the debate and legal arguments surrounding therapeutic cloning

8 November 2002

In the world of therapeutic cloning, the UK is now either an international pariah or a bold and innovative state whose research will give hope to many. This article looks at the legal route which the UK took to that position, and the present state of the law. The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) can now issue licences for the creation by cloning of human embryos. That is one of the main effects of the report of the House of Lords select committee on stem cell research, (see www.parliament.the-sta tioneryoffice.co.uk/pa/ld200102/ldselect/ldstem/). Why the committee was established The committee was established as a sop to opponents of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology (Research) Regulations 2001 (SI no 188) (the Regulations), which permitted the issue by the HFEA of licences for research using human embryos. After the passing of the Regulations, there was a moratorium on the grant of licences, and the select committee was told to look harder...

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