Confusion over cloned human embryos

2019-03-06 10:14:01

By Eugenie Samuel, Boston Biotechnology company Advanced Cell Technology indicated on Thursday that they may have already cloned human “embryo-like entities” in order to harvest stem cells from them. But the company will not confirm what stage the research has reached. In 1998 New Scientist learned that ACT had removed a nucleus from a cow’s egg and inserted human DNA. The aim was to grow a hybrid embryo that could produce human embryonic stem cells, but did not have the ultimate potential to make a baby (New Scientist July 11, 1998 p4). Embryonic stem cells can differentiate into any type of cell and, if produced by cloning a patient’s cell, could be used to grow perfectly-matched transplant tissue. Now ACT may have grown embryos past the point reached by South Korean scientists from Kyunghee University, Seoul in 1998. The Korean team claimed to have grown an embryo to the point where it was four cells large before aborting their effort. Advanced Cell Technology’s CEO Michael West would not say whether the companies’ scientists had successfully cloned human embryos or not. “Scientific results should be published in scientific journals,