One Step Too Far?

When U.S. biotech firm advanced Cell Technology announced last week that it had cloned the first human embryo, Europeans greeted the news with a mixture of interest, suspicion and revulsion. Scientists are keen to explore cloning as a potential source of embryonic stem cells, which could be used to treat diseases such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's, but many question the validity of ACT's results.

Others were appalled by the experiments. Jörg-Dietrich Hoppe, president of Germany's Federal Medical Board of Registration, described the U.S. research as "a nightmare unfortunately come true."

Central to the...

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