UK - Lab-grown, Human Embryo-like Structures

Arno Froese

Scientists have developed human embryo-like structures without using sperm, an egg or fertilization, offering hope for research on miscarriage and birth defects but also raising fresh ethical concerns. 

Earlier this year, several labs around the world released pre-print studies that had not been peer-reviewed, describing their development of early human embryo-like structures. Now one group’s research has been published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature, describing how they coaxed human embryonic stem cells to self-organize into a model resembling an early embryo.

The researchers say their work differs from those of other teams because it uses chemically rather than genetically modified embryonic stem cells and produces models more like real human embryos, complete with yolk sac and amniotic cavity.

The research “is a step towards opening a window on the period of human development where many pregnancies fail and which has been really difficult to study up until now.”

The research and other recent work shows “that models of human embryos are getting more sophisticated and closer to events that occur during normal development.”

In Britain, Cambridge University has begun developing the country’s first governance framework for stem cell-based human embryo models.

British law prohibits the culturing of human embryos in labs beyond the 14-day mark, but because the structures derived from stem cells are formed artificially, they are not explicitly covered by existing regulations.

Still, most researchers have adopted voluntary limits on their work at this stage., 7 September 2023

Arno's Commentary

When reading such material, one must ask the question, what next? Granted, medical science has greatly contributed to increased life expectancy and general health improvements around the world, but where is the limit? That is the big question.

It is this writer’s personal opinion, as the article also indicates, “The work will … renew debate on the need for clearer ethical rules on development of lab-grown human embryo models.” One senses the desire of mankind to actually mimic the Creator who, contrary to all science in the world, spoke things into existence. John begins his Gospel with these words: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made” (John 1:1-3).

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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