Policy ForumGenetics

Ethical Aspects of ES Cell-Derived Gametes

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Science  17 Sep 2004:
Vol. 305, Issue 5691, pp. 1719
DOI: 10.1126/science.1103083

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The derivation of gamete-like cells from embryonic stem (ES) cells is a highly significant scientific achievement. Because the technology is still in its early phases, we now have an important window of opportunity to start framing the ethical discussion on the implications of deriving gametes from human ES cells. The authors of this Policy Forum explore the implications for human-assisted reproduction, both for heterosexual and homosexual couples, and the ways in which this technology might impact our social understanding of reproduction.