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I caught this post on The Node, the blog/community site run by Development (The Company of Biologists).  John Gurdon and Helen Blau gave a talk on Growing a human Body Part in London, last week at the Royal Insitute.

Growing a Human Body Part

I’m sorry I missed it.  It sounds like an interesting talk.  Apparently, the question was raised:

Suppose a six-month-old baby dies in an accident. Skin cells of the baby are saved and frozen. Assume that the parents can’t have any more children of their own, and that there are no technological barriers to human cloning. Would you be in support of the parents using the skin cells of their dead child to generate a “twin”?

Interesting dilemma, and a question that’s currently being chewed on by the ethicists. The issue of not raising your own children is a big deal for some.  There is also the fact that a clone or a “twin”, no matter how you dress it up, is not a copy of the person that died.  Any expectations to that end or lingering what if’s the parents may carry around with them, could have repercussions for the twin.   Interestingly though, public opinion is considerably more in favour of this sort of scenario, than science is.

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