Is Embryo Selection Legal
Sex selection for non-medical reasons could also lead to gender imbalances in society, especially in countries with documented histories of gender discrimination. Other social justice concerns include the diversion of medical resources otherwise allocated to infertility treatment and fears that the practice is only accessible to those who have the resources to pay for it. You may also hear that IVF sex choice is called IVF sex choice, but it is important to note the fundamental differences in the definitions of these terms. According to the World Health Organization, sex refers to the “different biological and physiological characteristics of men and women, such as reproductive organs, chromosomes, hormones, etc.” Gender, on the other hand, refers to the “socially constructed characteristics of women and men – such as norms, roles and relationships of and between groups of women and men.” Some concerns about the use of polygenic embryo screening are based on scientific evidence. For example, the score indicates the likely risk that a future child will develop a particular condition, but does not guarantee that this will be the case. Other concerns are based on ethical reasons. If we look at a disease for which polygenic embryo screening has been used – heart disease – it is questionable whether such screening is an extreme intervention. Heart disease is treatable and preventable; Individuals can reduce their risk of heart disease through environmental management such as monitoring their diet. This raises the question of whether it is ethically justifiable to choose against embryos with an increased likelihood of developing heart disease later in life if the disease can be treated.
On the other hand, it can be argued that screening for polygenic embryos would have a positive impact on public health by reducing the burden on health systems. It could be considered unethical not to use this technology, as it would offer future generations the prospect of a healthier life. We may be morally obliged to check the polygenic risk values of embryos and to select embryos with the genetic characteristics that indicate the best prospects for quality of life. Ibid. 44. The issue of “embryonic politics,” I maintain, is one of the elements related to the politicization of reproduction in the American constitutional environment and how it can fit into the interpretation of fundamental rights and freedoms. In Section 2.3 of this chapter, I discuss this topic in more detail. In the UK, a legal authority called the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority (HFEA) regulates which assisted reproductive technologies can be offered. The HFEA derives its authority from the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill 2007. These calculations allow the use of PGD only for medical purposes, including HLA matching, and the HFEA maintains a detailed list of conditions under which PGD is permitted (Conditions of PGD authorized by HFEA, 2015). Licensing committees decide whether new conditions are considered appropriate medical uses of PGD after reviewing an application submitted by a fertility clinic on behalf of a patient. Before the application is reviewed by a licensing committee, it is sent to clinical geneticists and posted on the HFEA website for public comment.
Licences may be issued where there is a serious risk that an embryo: (a) suffers from a severe physical or mental disability; b. a serious illness; or c. any other serious disease” (Human Fertilization and Embryology Act, 1990). To reduce penetration and later onset conditions, the HFEA conducted more comprehensive policy reviews, including public consultation. Like the France, the United Kingdom regulates precisely the conditions under which PGD can be used and has concluded that PGD can be used to select a serious illness or to select an HLA match for a sick relative. Although screening for PGT-A for medical reasons is a generally accepted practice, its use for the sole purpose of sex selection remains ambiguous in the medical community and in general. While Brauer says IVF and genetic testing technology have come a long way, helping millions of couples achieve their dream of becoming parents, “technology comes with a very slippery ethical slope that starts with sex selection.” To avoid genetic stratification of the Gattaca-like society, Hsu expressed hope that “progressive governments will make this procedure free for all.” But Hasson thinks this would not solve the problems of inequality that such techniques could exacerbate. Even though PRS for smartness has, say, little real predictive value, she says that “belief in genomic predictions can itself be a driver of intense inequality in society” by reinforcing ideas of genetic determinism. “Families who invest their money, time and hopes in this type of screening and selection will have children they believe are genetically superior, and these children will be treated as superior by their parents, caregivers and educators.” Christian adoptions in the night light. Snowflake embryo adoption program. www.nightlight.org/snowflakes-embryo-adoption-donation/embryo-adoption/.
Retrieved 16 September 2018. A third, more controversial use of PGD involves screening for chromosomally abnormal embryos in order to improve relatively low pregnancy rates and reduce the relatively high rates of miscarriages associated with in vitro fertilization procedures (often due to chromosomal abnormalities). While some experts have gone so far as to suggest that this type of PGD should be systematic for in vitro fertilization procedures because it increases its success rate, others caution that data has not yet shown that PGD actually improves pregnancy rates or reduces miscarriage rates after in vitro fertilization (Kuliev & Verlinksy, 2003; Gleicher et al., 2008). The latter group argues that the use of PID for chromosomal screening is still “experimental”. Aurea`s polygenic screening was done by a New Jersey-based company called Genomic Prediction. California-based gene sequencing company Orchid Biosciences now also offers an embryo screening package that assesses the risks of common diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and schizophrenia. Belluck P (August 4, 2017) Gene editing for “Designer Babies”? Very unlikely, scientists say. The New York Times. www.nytimes.com/2017/08/04/science/gene-editing-embryos-designer-babies.html As datasets increase, costs decrease, and forecasts improve, it seems clear that polygenic embryo screening (PSE) is increasingly being used to select desired embryos (outside of regulatory prohibitions). I found some of the concerns about using PES strange.
One of these concerns was that the screening score is a probability, not a guarantee, of developing a particular condition. But little is guaranteed when it comes to genetics and environment, and we make decisions based on the odds of expected outcomes all the time. Although there absolutely must be some agreement on the probabilities considered acceptable under what conditions, the fact that we are not talking about certainties should not be seen as an attack on the PES. PGD can be used for these “non-medical” purposes in the United States because there are no legal restrictions on the use of the technique. It can be used for any condition for which genetic testing is available at the discretion of fertility treatment physicians and their patients. In contrast, in many European countries, there are rigid legal structures that determine for which indications IPR is permitted.3 However, professional advice on the use of IPR is scarce and inadequate. The Society`s policies are not legally binding, and many policies state that they are educational resources rather than requirements (Bayefsky & Jennings, 2015). In addition, none of the professional societies concerned has issued conclusive guidance to limit IPR to a range of ethically acceptable uses. For example, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) published a sex selection paper in 1999 that discouraged the use of PGD for non-medical sex selection, but the subsequently revised ASRM Ethics Committee on Sex Selection states that “there are reasonable disagreements about the lawfulness” of non-medical sex selection and that, therefore, practitioners “have no ethical obligation to provide or refuse non-medically indicated sexual methods.
Selection” (American Society for Reproductive Medicine Ethics Committee, 2015).