Updating embryo research guidelines

first_img Related Hard look at ‘who’s responsible?’ in HMS lecture Because of that, some suggested rooting out factors behind the guideline — such as the ability to feel pain or to think — and using those to create guidelines more appropriate to the scientific work being done today.“We’re making more and more faithful, more and more elaborate neural structures for any part of the brain, skipping over the body parts that may make it seem like an embryo,” said Harvard Medical School’s (HMS) Robert Winthrop Professor of Genetics George Church. “But there’s essentially no limit to the technology, so we need to focus on ethics and humanity.”The 14-day rule is a widely accepted research guideline in the United States and is enshrined in law in a number of countries around the world. Its roots go back decades. Speakers said it was seen as appropriate because it is the point after which an embryo will not twin, and so can be considered an individual. It is also before the development of a nervous system that could allow the embryo to feel pain or think.Robert Truog (left) and Insoo Hyun participate in a panel discussion on the ethical ramifications of the 14-day rule and its future. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer“What are the first appearing features of the developing embryo that signify the emergence of an entity that we should protect from experimentation?” asked John Aach, lecturer on genetics at HMS.The event, “The Ethics of Early Embryo Research and the Future of the 14 Day Rule,” was sponsored by Harvard’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics, the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, and Harvard’s Office of the Vice Provost for Research. It included a review of the guideline’s history, of recent progress in human developmental biology, and a panel discussion about the rule’s possible future. The event was also supported by the International Society for Stem Cell Research and HMS’ Center for Bioethics.While Greely advised against changing the rule as it would relate to natural human embryos, he and Roger Pedersen, a professor at the University of Cambridge, were less concerned about newly developed embryo-like structures. Since they don’t have the capacity to develop on their own, Pederson said he’d create a “bright line” between them and natural human embryos with regard to the rule.“Unless there’s a really good reason to wave the red flag in front of that bull, don’t do it,” Greely said.SaveSave With advancing lab technology perhaps calling into question a longstanding guideline that prohibits experimentation on human embryos older than 14 days, scientists and ethicists gathered at Harvard Law School recently to discuss whether and how that stricture should be revised.Some speakers at the event, held at the School’s Austin Hall on Nov. 7, urged changes that get to heart of why 14 days was once considered appropriate rather than a simple prohibition. Lifting that limit would allow scientists to learn more about human development and improve guidance on the handling of newly developed cellular structures that mimic embryos.“My view is the 14-day rule should be looked at as a public-policy tool and not as a strict moral distinction between right and wrong,” said Insoo Hyun, associate professor of bioethics and philosophy at Case Western Reserve University. “Is it time to get rid of such lines in the sand and rely solely on clear ethical principles?”Gist Croft presents his research at the conference in Austin Hall. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff PhotographerOther speakers, however, said it’s important to understand the political ramifications of any change, ramifications that — once the guideline was opened for discussion — could see it revised in a way that many scientists wouldn’t favor.“I’m terrified to ask lawmakers to pass laws, I’m terrified of what we’d get,” said Stanford University Law School Professor Henry Greely. “Probably worse than what we have now.”A driving force behind the debate has been research advances that have led to the creation of self-organizing embryo-like structures (SOELS) and synthetic human embryo-like entities (SHELEs), which resemble natural human embryos in some ways.As work continues on these embryo-like structures, some scientists question whether they should be concerned about violating the 14-day rule. Further, they said, stem cell science has enabled them essentially to fast-forward through human development to create organ-like human tissues, making calendar-based guidelines less relevant. Large-scale ethicslast_img read more

Rod Stewart lawyer: Plea deal in works in hotel altercation

first_imgWEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Lawyers for Rod Stewart and his son say they’ve worked out details for a plea deal to settle misdemeanor battery charges stemming from an altercation at a posh Florida hotel. The South Florida SunSentinel reports Stewart and his son Sean Stewart would not be going to trial for the altercation at The Breakers Hotel in Palm Beach on New Year’s Day 2020. Prosecutors had no immediate announcement, saying Saturday that plea deal negotiations are continuing. A security guard said Sean Stewart pushed him and Rod Stewart punched him after he barred their admission to a party they weren’t authorized to attend. The 76-year-old rocker’s hits include “Maggie May” and “Tonight’s the Night.”last_img read more

Horny Toad partners with The Clothes Exchange to benefit local non-profits

first_imgThe Clothes Exchange is pleased to announce that Horny Toad® Activewear, a national outdoor clothing company based in Santa Barbara, CA, has signed on as an apparel sponsor for 2011.Horny Toad makes outdoor inspired, sustainably oriented clothing for men and women. It is committed to lessening its environmental footprint, and to making informed social and environmental business decisions. As an avid community advocate and activist, joining forces with the Clothes Exchange is a natural fit for the company.‘Giving back and helping others is part of our DNA. We’re grateful for the efforts of the Clothes Exchange and proud to be part of such a well-organized and community-oriented event that touches so many lives in Burlington,’ said Gordon Seabury, CEO at Horny Toad.The Clothes Exchange changes lives by exchanging clothes. The mission-driven social enterprise is built upon the simple idea of swapping clothes to raise money for local nonprofits. Since the first article of clothing was sold in 2001, the Clothes Exchange has raised $210,000 for nine Chittenden County nonprofits. This year, the Clothes Exchange celebrates its tenth anniversary.While the Clothes Exchange collects gently used apparel from the closets of well-dressed women, it also relies on donations of new apparel from generous retailers, wholesalers, indy designers and national brands.‘Our retail and brand partners, like Horny Toad, play a critical role in our success and we are grateful to have their support,’ said Leslie Halperin, founder of the Clothes Exchange. ‘Through strategic partnerships with local retailers, designers and national apparel brands, we are fortunate to receive thousands of dollars worth of new merchandise to sell at our events.’The Clothes Exchange sells apparel items at its annual event in May and at smaller pop-up shops throughout the year. This year’s main event will take place on May 18-19 at the Sheraton in Burlington. Proceeds will go to 2011 beneficiary Spectrum Youth & Family Services.Horny Toad’s commitment to the Clothes Exchange will play a powerful role in the success of this year’s events and fundraising efforts.To learn more about the Clothes Exchange, visit: http://theclothesexchange.org(link is external). To become an apparel sponsor, visit: http://theclothesexchange.org/tce/apparel-sponsors/(link is external).About Horny Toad ActivewearBased in Santa Barbara a few hundred yards from the beach, Horny Toad is a clothing company that takes fun seriously, celebrates the adventure in every day life (both outdoors and in) and always aims to do the right thing. The Toad culture is oriented around community, sustainability, and the outdoors. To learn more visit www.hornytoad.com(link is external) or call 800.865.TOAD.About The Clothes ExchangeThe Clothes Exchange is a mission driven social enterprise dedicated to turning clothing into cash for community benefit. We collect gently used apparel from the closets of well-dressed women and new apparel from generous retailers, wholesalers, indy designers and national brands and sell them at bargain prices at fundraising events that feel more like shopping sprees! Each year the Clothes Exchange selects a new nonprofit to partner with who receives event proceeds. In 2007, The Clothes Exchange became a Vermont-based Limited Liability Corporation, owned and operated by Clothes Exchange Founder, Leslie Halperin.March 2011 ‘ Burlington, VT ‘ The Clothes Exchange###last_img read more

Lakers’ Magic Johnson at center of NBA probe into Paul George tampering

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Team officials aren’t allowed to make contact with players or their agents to discuss future plans unless it’s after the opening of the players’ free-agency year on July 1.The Pacers’ charges represent a growing concern around the league that potential suitors are reaching out to players and agents with one or two years left on current deals, trying to manipulate opt-outs and trades, league sources said.George, who grew up in Palmdale, informed the Pacers in early June that he planned to opt out of his contract in 2018 and intended to sign a free-agent deal with the Lakers. The Lakers were among the teams who made offers to the Pacers before the NBA draft, but he was ultimately traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder for fourth-year guard Victor Oladipo and second-year big man Domantas Sabonis on June 30.For the Pacers’ purposes, the notion that George wants to sign with the Lakers in free agency next summer surely dampened his trade market.George has long been public in his desire and interest to potentially play for his hometown Lakers, and the 58-year-old Johnson has been open about his affinity for George ever since rejoining the organization’s front office in February. During an appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” in February, Johnson even joked about ways in which he could openly recruit George while avoiding the league’s tampering rules.“I had to go to school. I had to go to CBA school, salary cap school and tampering school,” he said with a laugh. “You can’t tamper with somebody else’s player.”Kimmel pressed on, asking what would happen if Johnson ran into George somewhere.“We gonna say hi because we know each other, you just can’t say, ‘Hey, I want you to come to the Lakers,’ even though I’ll be wink-winking like, ‘You know what that means, right?’”Tampering likely happens often, especially in a social media age in which team rivalries can become diminished by the relationships between star athletes. Draymond Green helped recruit Kevin Durant from Oklahoma City to the Golden State Warriors a year ago, with text messages that Sports Illustrated reported began after the Warriors’ loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 7 of the NBA Finals. Durant was still under contract with Oklahoma City for 12 days while the conversations took place.George, 27, is one of the NBA’s most talented two-way players and has long been connected to possibly playing for the Lakers. The Lakers made a concerted effort to clear salary-cap space to pursue elite free agents such as George and Cleveland’s LeBron James next summer.George could be eligible to sign a four-year deal worth approximately $130 million with the Lakers next summer in free agency, though Oklahoma City will be able to offer him more than any potential suitor if he decides he wants to stay put.George averaged 23.7 points, 6.6 rebounds and 3.3 assists in 2016-17. The four-time All-Star was part of the 2016 USA Olympic gold-medal team less than two years after suffering a horrific broken leg. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with Packers“As the NBA’s statement made clear, we cannot comment about the specifics of any ongoing investigation. We can confirm, however, that we are cooperating fully with the NBA in the hope of clearing our name as soon as possible,” the statement said.If the league can prove the Lakers were guilty of tampering with George while he was under contract with the Pacers, the Lakers could be punished in a variety of ways, including a loss of draft picks, financial fines up to $5 million, future restrictions on acquiring George and possible suspensions of any offending officials.If the NBA were to find evidence that the Lakers had engaged in a side agreement with George, he could be prohibited from signing a free-agent deal with the team or being part of any future trade to the Lakers.It is unclear if any evidence exists that could incriminate Johnson or the Lakers. The NBA is using the law firm of Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen and Katz to probe the matter, the league said in a statement released Sunday.The story on the tampering charges involving George was first reported by Patreon’s Peter Vecsey.center_img The possibility of impermissible contact between Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson and four-time All-Star Paul George is at the heart of an NBA probe into possible tampering, according to an ESPN report.The Indiana Pacers filed tampering charges with the NBA against the Lakers, and the league issued a statement Sunday saying a probe is underway.“The Lakers have been cooperative and, at this point, no findings have been made. We have asked both teams to refrain from commenting while the investigation is ongoing,” the NBA statement said.The Lakers are denying the allegations filed by the Pacers, insisting there is no evidence of tampering, and they expect to be cleared in the matter.last_img read more