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Abstract

The Group has, in its Opinion No. 15 of 14th November 2000 on the ethical implications of human stem cell research and its uses, made recommendations, namely:
- to set up a strict public control by centralised authorities, on human embryo research where it is allowed;
- to take measures to prevent commercialisation of human embryos of cadaveric foetal tissue;
- to ensure the respect of ethical principles through the control of public authorities, concerning import of human stem cells, where allowed.

This present opinion deals with the specific ethical questions related to patenting of inventions involving human stem cells. The Group is aware of the fact that patents also involve many difficult and different questions of an economic and political nature, which may influence the way of dealing with patents, but has seen its task as providing an ethical focus on the question. The rapid development of biotechnology, especially the promise of stem cell research, makes it appropriate to consider and clarify some questions which could not have been taken into account when the 1998 EU Directive was drafted, given the state of the art at that time.

Additional information

Authors: No editor stated, European Group on Ethics in Science and New Technologies to the European Commission, Brussels (BE)
Bibliographic Reference: Luxembourg, Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, 2002, various pages, free of charge
Availability: EUR-OP reference: KA-40-01-561-2A-C Available from European Group on Ethics in Science and New Technologies to the European Commission, Brey 10/128, B-1049 Brussels, Email: Joelle.Bezzan@ec.europa.eu
ISBN: ISBN: 92-894-3065-6
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