Which bank? A guardian model for regulation of embryonic stem cell research in Australia
embryonic stem cell
health care facility
Embryonic Stem Cells
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AbstractIn late 2005 the Legislation Review: Prohibition of Human Cloning Act 2002 (Cth) and the Research Involving Human Embryos Act 2002 (Cth) recommended the establishment of an Australian stem cell bank. This article aims to address a lack of discussion of issues surrounding stem cell banking by suggesting possible answers to the questions of whether Australia should establish a stem cell bank and what its underlying philosophy and functions should be. Answers are developed through an analysis of regulatory, scientific and intellectual property issues relating to embryonic stem cell research in the United Kingdom, United States and Australia. This includes a detailed analysis of the United Kingdom Stem Cell Bank. It is argued that a "guardian" model stem cell bank should be established in Australia. This bank would aim to promote the maximum public benefit from human embryonic stem cell research by providing careful regulatory oversight and addressing ethical issues, while also facilitating research by addressing practical scientific concerns and intellectual property issues.