Family Planning Clinics Nottingham

Caritas in Veritate: Sunday Telegraph letter calls for rejection

The Wunschkind

Of Supp, Barbara

Can we produce people-to-measure? A British family just wants the child testify in a test tube, which can save a sick son with his stem cells. By Barbara Supp

The new child will begin as lumps in the laboratory of a private clinic in Nottingham. The doctor will see him cells, him and the other embryos, which he produced in vitro from seed Raj Hashmi and the eggs of his wife. It will allow the cells to genetically test and select the future child that fits best for the desired job. He will plant Shahana Hashmi in the womb and hope that it grows and survives the nine months.

It will be a planned child, as there was none so far in Europe. It is to save the life of his brother, who is now three years old and will soon die if the new kid does not help him.

A strange future. A strange family at all. Only four children, including one with a serious hereditary disease that consumes the blood. Then a fifth, which will save the sick brother, but can not.

Now there will be six children, the sixth from the test tube, and in a terraced house living room in North Leeds, England sits Shahana Hashmi and struggles that they may do this. She struggles to find the process normally fights against critics, "how can the only, how can anyone criticize us severely for what we do? Want the death penalty? Find the right? Want the death penalty for Zain?"

Shahana Hashmi is 37, slim and rather restless, Raj two years older, large and quiet. One parent is sitting in his living room and looking at a tangle of children, the jostling on her carpet, it consists of the one-year and three-year-old Haris Zain.

You can not see not, for the moment anyway, that Zain is terminally ill since birth. "Beta-thalassemia" is his suffering, which means that his blood is not able to bind enough oxygen because it lacks red blood cells. If you Zain's body would leave himself, the boy would not be older than ten. Because he gets transfusions and medication regularly, he has the chance to live a few more years.

Wait, they are nervous on this December day that will bring a decision for Zain's life, a preliminary decision in any case. The "Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority" (HFEA) will give their vote, which is the regulatory authority responsible for dealing with artificially produced embryos. On behalf of the government, they will judge whether this is morally and legally so what Hashmi's going to rescue her son.

"He needs matching bone marrow or stem cells." Says Raj Hashmi; alert he sits to his wife, he does not say much, he has the dark look of contempt for those who criticize his plans: "It may be a tall order, that people understand what it means an illness., but we understand it already. "

What they want, says Shahana Hashmi, is the "selection". They want permission for their test-tube embryos are tested, preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) is the process and in the UK, unlike in Germany, also allowed. But so far we could only apply to single genetically diseased embryos before planting. The Hashmi want more.

The new kid is supposed to be chosen not only afterwards that he spared the thalassemia. There should be one whose fabric perfectly matches the sick brother. With the blood from his umbilical cord, with its stem cells, which are found abundantly there, it should ensure that Zain survived.

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