Tuesday, October 18, 2011

European Court rules stem cell researchers can't patent research involving the destruction of human embryos

In a setback for European researchers hoping to make a fortune off of killing human embryos, the European Union's highest court ruled that stem cell research involving human embryos can not be patented.
Under an EU law from 1998, research methods that involve human embryos for industrial or commercial purposes can't be patented. A German court handling the dispute at the center of today's case sought the EU tribunal's view on how to interpret the phrase "for scientific research involving human embryos" and to clarify the term "human embryo."

"A process which involves removal of a stem cell from a human embryo at the blastocyst stage, entailing the destruction of that embryo, cannot be patented," said the EU court. The blastocyst stage is about five days after fertilization.