Donation of embryos for human development and stem cell research.
This manuscript reports the process by which human embryos can be donated for research for generation of stem cell lines and for studies of human development and disease. The process includes a two-stage consenting process designed to help couples make informed decisions about embryo disposition (to keep embryos in storage, donate for research or to discard). The consenting methods minimize conflicts of interest and maximize respect for patient choice.
Using donated human embryos for scientific research raises ethical questions about the donation process. We describe a two-stage consent process designed to help couples make informed decisions about embryo disposition. This consent methodology minimizes conflict of interest, respects patient choice, and provides a much-needed resource to patients and the research community.