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What would you do with excess embryos?

Catherine McDiarmid-Watt | Thursday, February 08, 2007 | 0 comments

Andrea Stone personalizes the stem-cell debate this morning with a story about how hard it is for some patients to decide what to do with the embryos that are left over after fertility treatments.

"How they decide will help determine the future of research into embryonic stem cells, the master cells from which scientists hope to develop treatments for diabetes, Alzheimer's and other diseases," she writes in USA TODAY. "Scientists hope to find cures using adult or amniotic fluid stem cells, but researchers like George Daley of Harvard say they are not a substitute for embryonic stem cells, which potentially can become any cell in the body."

No one's sure how many embryos are being stored, but one study estimated there were about 400,000 in 2003.

"Behind the public controversy is a private decision with moral, ethical and religious considerations. It is made even more complex by financial restrictions on stem cell research by the federal government — the nation's largest funder of medical research — and a crazy quilt of state laws and programs," Stone writes.

Full article:

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About Catherine: I am mom to three grown sons, two grandchildren and two rescue dogs. After years of raising my boys as a single mom, I remarried a wonderful man who had never had a child of his own. Unexpectedly, I found myself pregnant at 49!
Sadly we lost that precious baby at 8 weeks, and decided to try again. Five more losses, turned down for donor egg, foster care and adoption due to my age and losses - we have accepted that there will be no more babies in our house.

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