Panayiotis Zavos, of the Kentucky Center for Reproductive Medicine, Lexington, US, say his team has shown that cells taken from humans after death could be used for cloning. This latest work is purely experimental and no embryos were implanted for cloning, said Zavos, announcing the results at his own press conference in London, UK.
However, the claims were immediately met with both revulsion and scepticism from the UK scientific community.
The work is “both scientifically questionable and ethically unacceptable”, says Richard Gardner of the UK Royal Society's working group on stem cell research and cloning. “It is grossly misleading to suggest that you can replicate a loved one by producing a cloned person with the same genetic material.”