Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Don't Halt Vital Research, Plea

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Don't Halt Vital Research, Plea

Article excerpt

Vital Tyneside research into human disease could be hit if permission to create part animal, part human embryos is withheld.

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) meets on Wednesday to discuss bids for licences to create embryos.

But a Government White Paper proposes outlawing creating such embryos ( a move threatening work at Newcastle's Centre For Life.

In November Centre experts lodged a bid with the HFEA to create part human, part cow embryos to use stem cells to grow tissue, such as muscle or livers.

In October Centre scientists said they hoped for approval to create hybrid rabbit and human cells to be reprogrammed to grow into different cell matter.

If their research is successful they could potentially eliminate and replace damaged stem cells, leading to treatments for conditions such as Parkinson's or leukaemia.

Dr Lyle Armstrong, lecturer in stem cell biology at the Institute of Human Genetics at Newcastle University, which is linked to the Centre for Life, is leading the research team and has been appealing to the HFEA for approval. …

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