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Defending life
from conception to natural death


News, 22 July 2004

22 July 2004

22 July 2004 A 14-year-old girl was given her stillborn child and told to take him or her home. Staff at Bishop Auckland general hospital, County Durham, England, gave the 11-week baby to the young mother in a bottle which she stored in her family's refrigerator. A midwife and an undertaker subsequently collected the remains. The hospital is to issue new guidelines. [BBC, 22 July ] The British Columbia supreme court has awarded $60,000 (Canadian) to a woman whose child survived an attempt to abort him or her. The money is to compensate for stress and lost income, but the judge said that, since the boy or girl was a source of joy to the mother, she would not get money for the child's upkeep. Prince George regional hospital offered the un-named woman money to go to the United States for a partial-birth abortion, but she declined it. [, 21 July ] Scientists have changed stem cells from mouse brains into blood vessel cells. Researchers at the Salk Institute, California, incubated the brain tissue with existing blood vessel cells. [Boston Globe, 20 July ] The use of stem cells from voluntary adult donors is an ethical alternative to embryo research. The UK's Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority is to become part of a new body which will also regulate the use of human tissue. The change is part of government plans to reduce the number of such organisations and to cut staff. [Government News Network, 22 July ] Left- or right-handedness could be determined in the womb. Researchers at Queen's university, Belfast, Northern Ireland, found that babies who sucked their right thumbs in utero were right-handed at or around 11 years of age. It had been thought that the preference was only established in infancy. [BBC, 21 July ] Mexico's Catholic bishops are concerned that the law establishing the country's new genomic medicine centre does not prohibit cloning there. President Fox and his health minister insist that the centre's work will not involve cloning, embryo research or assisted reproduction. A clause forbidding cloning was deleted from the law before it was passed. [Zenit, 21 July ] The management of a Marie Stopes clinic in Perth, Australia, have persuaded a neighbouring childcare centre to erect a two-metre wall so that women coming for abortion are not upset by the sound of children playing. [, 21 July ]

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