Britain may allow more savior siblings

August 2, 2007

British couples may be allowed to use in vitro fertilization to select embryos that are a genetic match to siblings with non-fatal illnesses.

Stem cells from the umbilical cord or bone marrow of babies who are a genetic match of their siblings can be used in transplants, The Telegraph said Wednesday.

Currently, couples in Britain are allowed to select embryos to create so-called "savior siblings" only in cases where an older sibling has life-threatening diseases.

The British newspaper said the proposals by a joint House of Commons and Lords committee are likely to provoke controversy over the ethical implications of creating a child to cure another family member.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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