Broad Debates on Pre-Implantation Diagnosis Eyed in Japan

Society Lifestyle

Tokyo, Aug. 31 (Jiji Press)--The Japan Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology said Saturday that it will launch discussions on expanding the scope of cases subject to pre-implantation diagnosis with other medical organizations, sociologists and patients.

The society will also review its current system of screening applications for pre-implantation diagnosis.

It has so far approved pre-implantation diagnosis, in which genes and chromosomes of eggs fertilized in vitro are examined, for limited cases including serious genetic disorders, due to criticism that the method could lead to the selection of life.

In spring last year, a 37-year-old woman in the western Japan city of Osaka applied for pre-implantation diagnosis over retinoblastoma, a type of eye cancer. The society turned down the application, concluding that the disease could lead to blindness but is not life-threatening in many cases.

After a group of patients led by the woman made inquires about the decision later, however, the society decided to ease the criteria by making pre-implantation diagnosis available for diseases that could have major impacts on daily life.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press