Monday, March 28, 2011


Thanks to all who made a submission to the Cloning Review (see Blog entry for Feb 15th).

The large majority of submissions argued against cloning, in light of the new, ethical alternative.

Read all the submissions at:

You can listen to our National Director's comments HERE in an online interview.

The concluding remarks in the submission by Australians for Ethical Stem Cell Research:

I trust that we have made the case that the scientific landscape of stem cell science has changed so dramatically since November 2007 that the argument about the ‘unique necessity’ for cloning no longer applies; that if our Senators and MPs had known in 2006 what we know now, cloning would never have been permitted. Arguments for SCNT/cloning are now marginal: its proposed role in mitochondrial disease is demonstrated here as a conceptual error, and the call to create cloned ESCs as a ‘comparison’ to iPSCs, even though we know ESCs are functionally identical to iPSCs, is truly clutching at straws. A sense of proportion – measuring the substantial ethical barrier to the creation of human embryos as mere research material, versus the shrivelled residual arguments for SCNT/cloning – should result in recommendations to repeal this inhuman and unjustified practice. 

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Our submission online at the Cloning Review

The Cloning Review Committee is posting yesterday's last-day-rush of submissions, including ours, to the legislative review site. There are many well worth a read, over a good red one night this week...

Ours is at the link: and opens with a line of argument tediously familiar to anyone who has followed this blog since 2009, and its predecessor, the pre-Yamanaka, "Conscience versus Con Science" since 2006:

Summary statement

SCNT/cloning is a human corruption and a scientific failure. It is unethical, in that it involves the creation of living human embryos solely for research and destruction. It is unnecessary, in that the stem cell revolution of 2007 has removed the sole scientific argument for cloning: SCNT/cloning is no longer the “unique method” for obtaining patient-matched pluripotent stem cells, in fact it has never obtained even a single human stem cell for all the millions spent and all the embryos created and destroyed. The new “induced pluripotent stem cell” (iPSC) technique has succeeded magnificently in achieving patient-matched pluripotent stem cells where cloning has failed. Further, the iPSC method is ethically uncontentious: it does not use women’s eggs and does not create and destroy human embryos. This Review Committee should recommend repeal of the unethical practice of SCNT/cloning - a practice which since 2007 has no plausible justification - and recommend restoring the long-standing prohibition on the creation of human embryos solely for research.