Genetic counselors and sex selection abortions

  By Sarah Terzo Rayna Rapp interviewed counselors at genetic clinics where women came to have their babies tested for disabilities including Down syndrome. The counselors then discussed with the women whether or not they would have abortions. Many of the women who came in aborted when they found out that their babies would have …

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“Regardless of size, shape or differences, each unborn child is one of a kind”

  By Dave Andrusko After all this time, I still have to remind myself that writers (and certainly those not working for a newspaper) don’t write headlines. That’s why “My view: Parental pains, birth defects and abortion” can be so neutral when W. Brett Branham’s analysis and conclusions are so hugely life-affirming. I saw the …

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Eugenic Pre-Natal Cleansing Spreads to Autism

By Wesley J. Smith More boys than girls have autism, so now, an Australian IVF clinic will search out male embryos for destruction before implantation, e.g., sex selection. A bioethicist thinks that accepting pre-natal autism cleansing needs to be respectfully debated. From, “Prenatal Screening and Autism,” by Andrew Whitehouse: “The internet was ablaze last week …

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The cost of “progress”

By Dave Andrusko Rarely would you get a headline that more accurately captures both the core of the story and the ethical implications. “The Boy Who Lived: Embryo testing is progress built on failure, termination, and tragedy. But we only hear about the happy endings.” Written by Slate’s William Saletan, the piece is a sobering …

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New England Journal of Medicine study could spur call for wider use of prenatal genetic scanning

By Dave Andrusko A nationwide study of 4,400 women published in Thursday’s New England Journal of Medicine found that scanning the genes of unborn babies “reveals far more about potential health risks than current prenatal testing does,” according to Marilynn Marchione, Chief Medical Writer for the Associated Press. The study, led by Dr. Uma Reddy …

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The New Eugenics: Engineering “Moral Enhancement” by embryo screening and selective abortion

By Richard Weikart Recently Oxford philosophy professor Julian Savulescu moved his campaign for “moral enhancement” out of the ivory tower and into the mainstream. This month Reader’s Digest is carrying his article, “It’s Our Duty to Have Designer Babies,” in which he promotes the idea that “people have a moral obligation to select ethically better …

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New Test opens “Pandora’s Box”

By Dave Andrusko We’ve written two stories about a very important topic—a new noninvasive procedure that may allow women someday to test their unborn babies for more than 3,500 genetic disorders. Needless to add, there are ethical concerns galore in opening this “Pandora’s Box,” as NPR’s Rob Stein described it. The research, published in the …

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New non-invasive pre-natal test raises enormous ethical issues

By Dave Andrusko “What if you could read much of your child’s medical future while it was still in the womb? Taking a major step toward that goal, one fraught with therapeutic potential and ethical questions, scientists have now accurately predicted almost the whole genome of an unborn child by sequencing DNA from the mother’s …

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Geneticist claims that weeding out embryos with severe genetic abnormalities is ‘a tremendous blessing and a wonderful thing’

By Peter Saunders Editor’s note. Dr. Saunders is a former general surgeon and CEO of Christian Medical Fellowship, a UK-based organization with 4,500 UK doctors and 1,000 medical students as members.  A consultant in genetic medicine has said that he believes new technologies that enable doctors to search out and discard human embryos with severe …

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“Family members have spoken and have said life is positive with Down syndrome”

By Dave Andrusko A series of three surveys conducted by doctors at Children’s Hospital in Boston paints a very positive picture of the reality of Down syndrome that is overwhelmingly at odds with the negative picture painted for parents when a prenatal diagnosis is made.  The results are published in the October edition of the …

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Infant Genetic Screening Financial and “Quality of Life Ethic” Worries

By Wesley J. Smith Editor’s note. This appears at Wesley’s terrific blog. As we have discussed here before, preventive screening has, in some cases, become controversial.  Example: PSA blood tests for signs of prostate cancer.  Some believe that false positives can lead to unnecessary further testing or treatment–adding to the strain on health care resources …

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Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis is too high a price for a perfect baby

Editor’s note. This appeared earlier this week on the blog of the Christian Medical Fellowship, a UK-based organization. Last week the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) held its annual meeting in Stockholm, Sweden on 3-6 July. Not surprisingly we had a number of stories from the papers presented at that meeting filtering …

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