10 August 2016
Joshua Brickman on the use of human stem cells in animal embryos
In an interview to the Danish scientific journal Videnskab Professor Joshua Brickman commented on lifting the ban in the U.S. to use human stem cells in animal embryos.
Until recently, it was forbidden for American scientists to conduct such experiments due to ethical considerations.
"The fear is that one can get to create horror creatures where you are in doubt about whether they are humans or animals," says Thomas G. Jensen, Head of the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Aarhus, which has been in Ethical Council.
"There are two areas where it is particularly worrying, the first one is if you begin to see the development of something that resembles human brains in animals, or if the animals forming human germ cells” adds Thomas G. Jensen.
Professor Brickman does not see it as a problematic research since it does not involve genetic changes. "Like in any other research area, knowledge can be misused and therefore projects should be examined case by case, rather than to be banned completely. The ethical regulations in the U.K. could be a good example for that" adds Joshua Brickman.
Joshua Brickman is a professor of molecular biology and head of research at the department for the study of early embryonic development in the Danish Stem Cell Center, associated with the University of Copenhagen