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European scientists worry that their research will instead flourish overseas

Embryonic stem cells have shown that they could eventually be very useful in the treatment of a range of currently incurable diseases such as diabetes, stroke and heart disease. But such research may be threatened, or even halted, in Europe due to a recent court decision.

Embryonic stem cells have the ability to transform into any human body tissue. For instance, earlier this year, the first eye was grown from embryonic stem cells in mice. But to grow these tissues, stem cells must be removed from a human embryo at the blastocyst stage, which destroys the embryo, and this has raised ethical questions regarding the process.

Greenpeace in Germany triggered a lawsuit saying that it is unethical to issue a patent based on stem cells from a human embryo that is destroyed afterward.

The Court of Justice, Europe's highest court, ruled in favor of the group. The ruling focused on a technique involving the conversion of human ambryonic stem cells into nerve cells.

"The use of human embryos for therapeutic or diagnostic purposes which are applied to the human embryo and are useful to it is patentable," said the European Court of Justice. "But their use for purposes of scientific research is not patentable. A process which involves removal of a stem cell from a human embryo at the blastocyst stage, entailing the destruction of that embryo, cannot be patented."

The decision has many European researchers outraged. This ruling could either halt stem cell research in Europe or send it overseas.

"This unfortunate decision by the court leaves scientists in a ridiculous position," said Professor Austin Smith of the Wellcome Trust Centre for Stem Cell Research at the University of Cambridge. "We are funded to do research for the public good, yet prevented from taking our discoveries to the marketplace where they could be developed into new medicines. One consequence is that the benefits of our research will be reaped in America and Asia."

Source: BBC

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RE: European Court of Justice?
By BZDTemp on 10/19/2011 10:32:24 AM , Rating: 2

RE: European Court of Justice?
By Reclaimer77 on 10/19/2011 10:39:03 AM , Rating: 2
Open a history book lol.

But actually I was just blatantly trolling our former oppressors, all in good fun :P

RE: European Court of Justice?
By Strunf on 10/19/2011 11:26:08 AM , Rating: 2
I just wonder from where did your ancestor came from...

RE: European Court of Justice?
By BZDTemp on 10/19/2011 6:33:55 PM , Rating: 3
I knew you were trolling I just hoped there was a little bit of substance anyway but it seems my hope was in vain. For good fun to be had there needs to substance or perhaps something along the lines of Benny Hill.

Your former oppressors providing you're in the US and that there can even be talk about oppressors would England or if you're really reaching then perhaps France, Holland and a couple of other European nations. Or if you wanna go back to before that with the Egg and all that then we can talk about some Viking settlements in the north east but there was hardly talk of oppression.
So you see talking about former oppressors in the context is just showing how little you know. The European court (which is really the EU court and nothing to do with Europe as a whole) represents many more nations than back when anyone was oppressing the US and in fact none of the nations from back then really exists except by name. Back then it was all monarchies and today it's constitutional monarchies eg. democracies so totally different.

Now you go read a book :-)

RE: European Court of Justice?
By Paj on 10/20/2011 7:22:00 AM , Rating: 2
France as an oppressor of the US?

oh dear.

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