Stem Cells Could Be Taken in Cases of Miscarriage, Says Bioethicist

ROME, MARCH 13, 2003 ( It is morally acceptable to extract organs or stem cells from human embryos that have died as a result of a miscarriage, says a Catholic expert in bioethics.

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Professor Adriano Bompiani, director of the Paul VI International Center of the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, said today: «In the ambit of spontaneous abortion, if the embryo is still vital at the cellular level, there is no difficulty.»

It is a case analogous to that of the transplantation of organs taken from a cadaver, he explained.

In order to meet proper moral criteria for extracting organs or cells from the fetus, at least two conditions are required, he said.

First of all, «explicit maternal permission,» Bompiani told a press conference at Vatican Radio headquarters.

Second, «there must be no doubt whatsoever that the miscarriage was not provoked,» he said.

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