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Stem Cell DialoguesA Philosophical and Scientific Inquiry Into Medical Frontiers$
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Sheldon Krimsky

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780231167482

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231167482.001.0001

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Patenting Human Embryonic Stem Cells is Immoral and Illegal (In Europe)

Patenting Human Embryonic Stem Cells is Immoral and Illegal (In Europe)

(p.95) Dialogue 15 Patenting Human Embryonic Stem Cells is Immoral and Illegal (In Europe)
Stem Cell Dialogues

Sheldon Krimsky

Columbia University Press

This dialogue provides a fictional account of a panel discussion held at the Royal Society headquarters in London, about the international ramifications of the ruling by the Court of Justice of the European Union in the case Brüstle v Greenpeace. According to the Court, patenting embryonic stem cells is unethical and therefore illegal. Any patents already awarded are to be withdrawn. The discussion is moderated by Dr. Rebecca Franklin. Other members of the panel are Hans Weninger, a scientist at the University of Bonn whose colleague filed a patent on turning human embryonic stem cells into neural cells to treat neurological defects; Bettina Andrews, a lawyer and legal scholar specializing in the European Union; and Jacques Penoir, a consultant to Greenpeace International and an activist bioethicist. They tackle the ethics and politics of patenting embryonic stem cells; Greenpeace's numerous challenges to patents in biotechnology; the power behind “ordre public” in EU law; and the German Federal Patent Court's decision declaring patent claims on human embryonic stem cell lines illegal.

Keywords:   embryonic stem cells, Brüstle v Greenpeace, patents, human embryonic stem cells, neural cells, European Union, Greenpeace International, ethics, politics, biotechnology

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