A blog launched on the 41st anniversary of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC), the first pro-life organisation in the world, established on 11 January 1967. SPUC has been a leader in the educational and political battle against abortion, human embryo experimentation and euthanasia since then. I write this blog in my role as SPUC's chief executive, commenting on pro-life news, reflecting on pro-life issues and promoting SPUC's work.
Tuesday, 18 September 2012
Mitochondrial transfer produces clones and GM babies
SPUC has criticised the launch of a consultation on mitochondrial transfer as a sham, arguing that these techniques mean the production of genetically manipulated babies, who will in some cases be clones of earlier IVF embryos.
Anthony McCarthy, SPUC's education and publications manager, said: "Over the past 20 years, proponents of human embryo experimentation have repeatedly claimed that such research offered the promise - and perhaps the only hope - of finding treatments for serious diseases. The public has been repeatedly misled.
"There are profound moral objections to the exploitation of human embryos - each one a member of the human family, used as a laboratory animal and then unceremoniously discarded. Yet the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has sanctioned the exploitation of millions of the tiniest humans, to no discernible benefit.
"The original assurances that IVF would not lead to cloning or genetic engineering of embryos are now being set aside, as the HFEA launches another consultation apparently designed to convince the public that such manipulations are benign.
“Mitochondrial transfer research is the thin end of the wedge. It is the biotech industry's excuse to create a genetically manipulated baby - in some cases a clone of an original IVF embryo who is killed to create it. Once germ-line engineering is accepted for mitochondrial disease it will then be pushed for other purposes. This is clearly the "game plan" that the biotech industry and the HFEA are working to, and the consultation exercise is going to make no difference to their objectives."