Bioethics News

A Mother Learns the Identity of Her Child’s Grandmother. A Sperm Bank Threatens to Sue.

Danielle Teuscher decided to give DNA tests as presents last Christmas to her father, close friends and 5-year-old daughter, joining the growing number of people taking advantage of low-cost, accessible genetic testing.

But the 23andMe test produced an unexpected result. Ms. Teuscher, 30, a nanny in Portland, Ore., said she unintentionally discovered the identity of the sperm donor she had used to conceive her young child.

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Embryo ‘Adoption’ Is Growing, but It’s Getting Tangled in the Abortion Debate

As evangelical Christians, Paul and Susan Lim believe that life begins at conception. So when they decided to have a third child, in vitro fertilization was out of the question, since the process often yields extra embryos. But “adopting” the frozen embryos of another couple who had gone through I.V.F. was not. Dr. Lim called it a “rescue operation.” To him, transferring donated embryos to his wife’s uterus was akin to saving a life.

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Consent not a defence, court tells body modification artist

Dr Evil, a British body modification artist, has been found guilty of three counts of grievous bodily harm for tongue-splitting and nipple removal despite the fact that his clients consented to the procedures.

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How Chummy Are Junk Food Giants and China’s Health Officials? They Share Offices

Happy 10 Minutes, a Chinese government campaign that encouraged schoolchildren to exercise for 10 minutes a day, would seem a laudable step toward improving public health in a nation struggling with alarming rates of childhood obesity. But the initiative and other official Chinese efforts that emphasized exercise as the best way to lose weight were notable for what they didn’t mention: the importance of cutting back on the calorie-laden junk foods and sugary beverages that have become ubiquitous in the world’s second largest economy.

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Ending Privacy As We Know It

Threats to privacy and confidentiality swirl around. Each day the newspaper seems to report on stories that show the erosion of this fundamental human right. Larger legal and ethical conversation raised by new technologies and norms that make privacy a problem have to take place soon. The one solution that will not work is assuming our 20thCentury privacy rules will work for the 21stCentury and beyond.

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Organ donors to be asked if they are religious

People who join the NHS’s UK organ donation register are to be asked if they want their religious beliefs to be considered in the donation process. The question aims to reassure people that donation can take place in line with their faith or beliefs. It is hoped the measure can help to boost the low proportion of donors from black and Asian backgrounds.

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Cambodia releases surrogate mothers who agree to keep children

Thirty-two surrogate mothers charged with human trafficking in Cambodia for carrying babies for Chinese clients have been released after agreeing to keep the children, officials say. The women were arrested in June in a raid as part of a crackdown on the country’s commercial surrogacy trade.

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First baby born to woman with uterus transplanted from deceased donor

For the first time, a baby has been born to a woman who received a uterus transplant from a deceased donor, according to Hospital das Clínicas at the University of São Paulo School of Medicine in Brazil.

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Surrogate mothers: ‘I gave birth but it’s not my baby’

Canada has become a hot destination for parents-to-be looking for “altruistic surrogates” – women who give birth to babies they are not genetically related to and only charge pregnancy-related expenses in return.

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Now Mental Health Patients Can Specify Their Care Before Hallucinations and Voices Overwhelm Them

Psychiatric advance directives allow patients with serious mental illness to specify the treatment they want if they become too sick to say so. Patients, advocates and doctors believe such directives (called PADs) could help transform the mental health system by allowing patients to shape their care even when they lose touch with reality.

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