Distinguishing Medical Practice and Research: The Special Case of IVF
Bioethics. 1989 Oct; 3(4): 301-319.
The debate over the acceptability of human embryo research takes place within the context of a broader regulatory framework for experimentation with human subjects. Using the Australian situation for illustration, Gaze and Dawson examine the concepts of therapeutic, nontherapeutic, and destructive experimentation in medical practice. They explore the problems of applying these concepts to human embryo research by asking whether the embryo or the woman undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment is the experimental subject. They argue that when the embryo is treated as the sole subject, the woman is lost sight of, and that research that is therapeutic for the embryo may be nontherapeutic for her. Regulation of embryo research should take into account the relationship between research and the woman's treatment, the dependence of embryos upon women for gestation, and the empirical, uncertain nature of biomedical knowledge. (KIE abstract)
Adults; Biomedical Research; Consent; Embryo Research; Embryo Transfer; Embryos; Ethical Review; Evaluation; Females; Fetal Research; Government; Government Regulation; Health; In Vitro Fertilization; Informed Consent; IVF; Investigator Subject Relationship; Knowledge; Mother Fetus Relationship; Medical Research; Nature; Nontherapeutic Research; Patient Care; Patients; Regulation; Research; Research Subjects; Review; Risks and Benefits; Self Regulation; Standards; Therapeutic Research;
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