I was saddened to hear today that the Human Fertilsation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) are not going to allow research in to stem cells which could lead to cures for Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and other diseases.
The HFEA's decision seems to be largely based on a mis understanding, propagated largely by Christians groups, that this is "Frankenstein science" and " an affront to humanity". Those opposed to this sort of research, and let us be clear, they oppose any sort of new development and have in the past, be it transplantation, blood transfusions and other widely accepted medical breakthroughs, claim that this research is creating mutant half human, half animal foetuses.
The facts are, of the reports are properly read, that all, I repeat ALL animal DNA is removed form the egg, in to which human DNA is then implanted and grows. The foetus cells, now just 5 days old are 100% human, but enclosed in the animal egg. If the process was allowed to go on, the human DNA would consume all the remainder of the animal egg, leaving the whole thing to be 100%, even the egg itself.
At five days old, human stem cells are removed from the foetus (which as I have explained is 100% human tissue) so that research can then be carried out.
The potential to save so many lives from this research is enormous, but the vocal minority are being vocal in a very misleading way to scare people. What a shame that our government pays more heed to the religious right wing than it does its own scientists.