Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of September 26, 2005
Ban harvesting fresh or frozen stem-cells
Canadian Catholic News
The Catholic Organization for Life and the Family (COLF) says that harvesting embryonic stem cells is wrong, whether those cells come from a frozen embryo or not.
In a Sept. 16 news release, COLF reacted to an article in the Sept. 13 National Post entitled "Moratorium urged on use of 'fresh embryos'" where two leading Canadian ethicists expressed shock that a Toronto clinic is using never-frozen embryos to harvest stem cells.
The ethicists urged the embryos be frozen for future reproductive use, since in vitro fertilization requires the use of potentially harmful fertility drugs and invasive procedures to extract a woman's eggs.
However, COLF argues, "It is not more ethical to harvest stem cells from a frozen embryo than from a fresh embryo. It is also not more ethical to harvest cells from an embryo that will be discarded anyway than from an embryo that could be used for reproduction."
"Since stem cell extraction always kills the human embryo, we call on the Canadian government, and on all Canadians, to stop the practice of human embryonic stem cell research altogether," COLF says.
COLF urges Canada to focus research on adult stem cells, which have already been used successfully in treatments of blood disorders, Parkinson's disease, diabetes and other diseases.