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Human Embryo Experiments

Question for Department of Health

UIN HL5910, tabled on 4 February 2016

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Prior of Brampton on 27 January (HL5039), whether the recently approved application by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority to perform genome editing in human embryos by means of CRISPR-Cas9 will be performed on embryos specifically created for research or only on those considered to be surplus to infertility treatments; whether that research application included any application for the creation of embryos; and if not, why the person responsible requested that reference to surplus embryos should be removed from the research project title.

Answered on

11 February 2016

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority has advised that this research project will make use of donated embryos that were originally created for treatment purposes. An application was not made to create embryos for the purposes of this research project.

The removal of ‘surplus’ from the title does not reflect a change in the way embryos will be donated to the research.