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6-Regulation: International conference to draw up cloningregulations

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                                  PART I
-------------------------------- GENET-news --------------------------------

TITLE:  Conference to draw up cloning regulations
SOURCE: Australian Broadcasting Corporation
DATE:   May 9, 2003

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Conference to draw up cloning regulations

Germany is to host an international conference next week in an effort to
draw up common scientific guidelines regulating cloning, the federal
research ministry said. The May 14-16 conference, grouping around 50
experts and researchers from around the world, will seek "to create a
scientific basis for the essential international cooperation in the field
of cloning", the ministry said. Participants will debate the scientific,
ethical, legal and social aspects of cloning. German Research Minister
Edelgard Bulmahn, who will open the gathering, called in January for a
worldwide ban on human reproductive cloning. Her appeal followed so far
unproven claims from a sect called the Raelians that it had arranged the
successful birth of two cloned babies. Ms Bulmahn said then that although
there was already piecemeal legislation on cloning, what was necessary
was an international ban akin to that on chemical weapons. Reproductive
cloning, which is designed to produce a human replica, is not the same as
therapeutic cloning for stem cell research. Although they use largely the
same techniques, scientists claim therapeutic cloning of cells or organs
helps them research and treat serious diseases. Ms Bulmahn is in favour
of a ban on human reproductive cloning as a first step before governments
discuss what restrictions, if any, to place on therapeutic cloning.

                                  PART II
-------------------------------- GENET-news --------------------------------

TITLE:  GENETIC CROSSROADS #30, part on human cloning legislation
SOURCE: Center for Genetics and Society, USA
DATE:   May 9, 2003

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On the Hill

Last month Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) held a hearing before the Senate
Judiciary Committee on a bill (S 303) that would ban reproductive cloning
but permit cloning for research. Senator Hatch, who sponsored the bill,
is a vocal opponent of abortion rights. His position on research cloning
puts him at odds with many of his colleagues and constituents who believe
embryos are the equivalent of human beings. The cloning debate continues
in the House as well, where members passed a bill sponsored by
Representatives Dave Weldon (R-Florida) and Bart Stupak (D-Michigan)
banning both reproductive and research cloning (HR 534) in February by a
vote of 241 to 155.

The US Patent Trademark Office panel dismissed a challenge by the
biotechnology firm Infigen on patents related to cloning. It ruled that
the cloning methods patented to the University of Massachusetts and
licensed to Advanced Cell Technology (ACT) will stand. The patent office
has not yet ruled on conflicting claims between ACT and Geron, a
California company that obtained cloning patent rights in its purchase of
the commercial arm of the Scottish research center where Dolly the sheep
was cloned.

In the States

The Governor of Arkansas recently signed into law a bill banning all
cloning, including cloning for research purposes. The law also prohibits
the sale, transfer, or purchase of materials for the purpose of
conducting human cloning. Violations would be punishable by up to 10
years in prison and a fine of $10,000.

North Dakota enacted similar legislation in April.

The New York State Assembly approved a bill which would ban reproductive
cloning but allow the use of cloning techniques to produce stem cells for
research. The bill now moves to the Republican controlled Senate.

The Massachusetts State Legislature is set to launch debate on similar
legislation. Massachusetts is home to several biotechnology firms,
including Advanced Cell Technology. To date, California is the only state
to authorize the use of cloned embryos for stem cell research. business/


Canada's long-debated regulation of new genetic and reproductive
technologies, such a cloning, is on the verge of clearing the House of
Commons. The final debate was scheduled for today. The bill bans the
cloning of human beings, the creation of animal-human hybrids, commercial
rent-a-womb contracts, and the creation of embryos solely for research.
0 9E2751202F1

Slovakia has announced that it will ban human cloning. According to a
prepared draft of the country's rewritten criminal law, cloning humans
will be illegal. Violators could face up to eight years in jail. 2580