Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Greens Urge Debate On Animal-Human Transplants

Greens Urge Debate On Animal-Human Transplants (Xenotransplantation)

Green Party Health Spokesperson Sue Kedgley is calling for urgent debate over Xenotransplantation - the process of transferring animal cells into humans.

Ms Kedgley said the approval for an Auckland based company to transplant pig cells into people with insulin-dependent diabetes could be imminent, and urgent public debate was required on the ethics and safety of xenotransplantation.

While welcoming the Ministry of Health's decision not to grant permission to the South Auckland company Diatranz to start clinical trials on insulin dependent diabetics immediately, Ms Kedgley said the Ministry's reported comments that this was only a 'temporary setback' suggested there was an urgent need to begin a public debate on the ethical and other health and safety considerations before any formal approval was given.

"Xenotransplantation is an issue with profound ethical and safety considerations," she said. "It involves crossing the species barrier between humans and animals which has existed for millenia, and tampering with the very basis of life.

"It raises the possibility of disease transfer between species, cross-over diseases from pigs to humans and of new infectious and, possibly, deadly, viruses," Ms Kedgley said. "It also raises questions as to whether sacrificing animals for xenotransplants is ethically and scientifically acceptable."

"There are so many unknowns in the field of xenotransplantation that nobody really knows what the implications are," she pointed out. "This is why it is essential that all of these issues are thoroughly investigated in a wide-ranging debate before any approvals are given for clinical trials," she said.

To date there has been no public consultation or debate about these issues.

"Let's not repeat the mistakes of genetic engineering, and try to introduce a new, highly risky and controversial technology before there has been a proper public debate or even a proper regulatory regime in place."

Ms Kedgley said she has the utmost sympathy for the plight of diabetics, and supports research to improve their health, but says that while it was perhaps possible that xenotransplantation could benefit individual patients it could also pose grave risks to the wider community.

ends

Contact Sue Kedgley: 4706728, 025 2709088


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Commerce Commission: Retail Fuel "Not As Competitive As It Could Be"

The Commission has outlined some options it considers could improve competition. There are two broad sets of options it thinks may have the potential to help create a competitive wholesale market. These are:

• Greater contractual freedom to make it easier for resellers to switch between suppliers; and
• Enabling wider participation in the majors’ joint infrastructure, notably the shared terminals and supporting logistics involved in their borrow-and-loan system.
Further options, including improving the transparency of premium petrol prices, are discussed in the draft report. More>>

ALSO:

 
 

Welfare: More Measures To Help Those Facing Homelessness

Ministers have announced $54 million in Government funding for initiatives which will support at-risk individuals and whānau to stay in their existing tenancies. The funding will also provide additional wrap around services. More>>

ALSO:


Corrections: New Strategy On Māori Reoffending And imprisonment

Authentic co-design with Māori, incorporating a Te Ao Māori worldview, and greater connectedness with whānau are key elements of Hōkai Rangi, Corrections’ new departmental strategy designed to address the long-term challenge of Māori reoffending and imprisonment. More>>

ALSO:

Pacific Island Forum: Australia v Everyone Else On Climate Action

Traditionally, communiques capture the consensus reached at the meeting. In this case, the division on display between Australia and the Pacific meant the only commitment is to commission yet another report into what action needs to be taken. More>>

ALSO:

Unscoped Or Missed Damage: Resolution For Canterbury Owners Of On-Sold Homes

People with over-cap on-sold* properties in Canterbury can now apply for a Government payment so they can get on and repair their homes. More>>

ALSO:

Hamilton-Auckland: First Urban Growth Partnership Signed

New Zealand’s first urban growth partnership between the Government, local councils and mana whenua was signed at a meeting of mayors, chairs and ministers in Hampton Downs today. More>>

ALSO:

Vote On Action Next Week: Secondary Principals Walk From Negotiations

“Unfortunately we consider there is no further value in continuing negotiations at this point. The government has not been able to table an offer that will be acceptable to our members.” More>>

Patrol Car Stolen, Glocks Taken: Manhunt In Gore

The driver rammed the patrol car before fleeing on foot with Police chasing, also on foot. The man has then circled back around, stolen the patrol vehicle, which had the keys left in it, and rammed another Police car... Two Police-issued Glock pistols were stolen. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels