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Bioethics controversy over mouse-human embryo
AFAR
2/3/2003

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In a highly controversial experiment, scientists at Maria Infertility Hospital in Seoul, South Korea, produced mice containing human stem cells. They had injected human stem cells into 4-day-old, fertilized mouse eggs, which were then inserted into the wombs of surrogate mice. This marks the first time Korean scientists have produced a viable animal in such experiments, after many failed attempts; other research groups around the world have also produced viable animals. The researchers say that the experiment was carried out to observe how human stem cells react in the bodies of animals, with the hope that the findings might lead to the possible cures for human diseases. However, for many, this type of research that mixes human and other species parts crosses the line of bioethics. The National Assembly is to vote on a pending law that forbids the mixing of cells between humans and other species.

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