IVG can pose significant ethical dilemmas: researchers warn

IVG can pose significant ethical dilemmas: researchers warn

While fertility experts and many couples are excited about a new technique that could allow doctors to create sperm and egg cells in a lab dish, some are arguing that it will pose significant ethical dilemmas.

The controversial technique, referred to as "in vitro gametogenesis (IVG)," can certainly help a lot in treating infertility, but it could also result in "embryo farming" and a craze for having "designer" babies.

Dr. Eli Adashi, a professor at Providence, Rhode Island-based Brown University' said IVG has already showed IVG can successfully be performed among mice. However, it is yet to be approved for use among humans to treat infertility.

Study authors wrote, "With science and medicine hurtling forward at breakneck speed, the rapid transformation of reproductive and regenerative medicine may surprise us. Before the inevitable, society will be well advised to strike and maintain a vigorous public conversation on the ethical challenges of IVG."

IVG could lead to a number of ethical problems. For instance, clinics might create dozens of eggs or embryos for their clients to choose from, and couples might create a huge number of embryos in order to select the best traits for their child. It would essentially devalue human life.

The theoretical implications of IVG were detailed in a paper published Wednesday (Jan. 11) in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

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