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Julian J. Koplin [24]Julian Koplin [14]
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  1.  33
    Moral Limits of Brain Organoid Research.Julian J. Koplin & Julian Savulescu - 2019 - Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics 47 (4):760-767.
    Brain organoid research raises ethical challenges not seen in other forms of stem cell research. Given that brain organoids partially recapitulate the development of the human brain, it is plausible that brain organoids could one day attain consciousness and perhaps even higher cognitive abilities. Brain organoid research therefore raises difficult questions about these organoids' moral status – questions that currently fall outside the scope of existing regulations and guidelines. This paper shows how these gaps can be addressed. We outline a (...)
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  2.  19
    Consent-GPT: is it ethical to delegate procedural consent to conversational AI?Jemima Winifred Allen, Brian D. Earp, Julian Koplin & Dominic Wilkinson - 2024 - Journal of Medical Ethics 50 (2):77-83.
    Obtaining informed consent from patients prior to a medical or surgical procedure is a fundamental part of safe and ethical clinical practice. Currently, it is routine for a significant part of the consent process to be delegated to members of the clinical team not performing the procedure (eg, junior doctors). However, it is common for consent-taking delegates to lack sufficient time and clinical knowledge to adequately promote patient autonomy and informed decision-making. Such problems might be addressed in a number of (...)
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  3.  30
    Moral uncertainty and the farming of human-pig chimeras.Julian Koplin & Dominic Wilkinson - 2019 - Journal of Medical Ethics 45 (7):440-446.
    It may soon be possible to generate human organs inside of human-pig chimeras via a process called interspecies blastocyst complementation. This paper discusses what arguably the central ethical concern is raised by this potential source of transplantable organs: that farming human-pig chimeras for their organs risks perpetrating a serious moral wrong because the moral status of human-pig chimeras is uncertain, and potentially significant. Those who raise this concern usually take it to be unique to the creation of chimeric animals with (...)
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  4.  95
    Assessing the Likely Harms to Kidney Vendors in Regulated Organ Markets.Julian Koplin - 2014 - American Journal of Bioethics 14 (10):7-18.
    Advocates of paid living kidney donation frequently argue that kidney sellers would benefit from paid donation under a properly regulated kidney market. The poor outcomes experienced by participants in existing markets are often entirely attributed to harmful black-market practices. This article reviews the medical and anthropological literature on the physical, psychological, social, and financial harms experienced by vendors under Iran's regulated system of donor compensation and black markets throughout the world and argues that this body of research not only documents (...)
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  5. Germline gene editing and the precautionary principle.Julian J. Koplin, Christopher Gyngell & Julian Savulescu - 2019 - Bioethics 34 (1):49-59.
    The precautionary principle aims to influence decision‐making in contexts where some activity poses uncertain but potentially grave threats. This perfectly describes the controversy surrounding germline gene editing. This article considers whether the precautionary principle should influence how we weigh the risks and benefits of human germline interventions, focusing especially on the possible threats to the health of future generations. We distinguish between several existing forms of the precautionary principle, assess their plausibility and consider their implications for the ethics of germline (...)
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  6.  32
    Human‐Animal Chimeras: The Moral Insignificance of Uniquely Human Capacities.Julian J. Koplin - 2019 - Hastings Center Report 49 (5):23-32.
    Human‐animal chimeras—creatures composed of a mix of animal and human cells—have come to play an important role in biomedical research, and they raise ethical questions. This article focuses on one particularly difficult set of questions—those related to the moral status of human‐animal chimeras with brains that are partly or wholly composed of human cells. Given the uncertain effects of human‐animal chimera research on chimeric animals’ cognition, it would be prudent to ensure we do not overlook or underestimate their moral status. (...)
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  7.  21
    Lessons from Frankenstein 200 years on: brain organoids, chimaeras and other ‘monsters’.Julian Koplin & John Massie - 2021 - Journal of Medical Ethics 47 (8):567-571.
    Mary Shelley’sFrankensteinhas captured the public imagination ever since it was first published over 200 years ago. While the narrative reflected 19th-century anxieties about the emerging scientific revolution, it also suggested some clear moral lessons that remain relevant today. In a sense,Frankensteinwas a work of bioethics written a century and a half before the discipline came to exist. This paper revisits the lessons ofFrankensteinregarding the creation and manipulation of life in the light of recent developments in stem cell and neurobiological research. (...)
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  8.  10
    Ethics of Buying DNA.Julian J. Koplin, Jack Skeggs & Christopher Gyngell - 2022 - Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 19 (3):395-406.
    DNA databases have significant commercial value. Direct-to-consumer genetic testing companies have built databanks using samples and information voluntarily provided by customers. As the price of genetic analysis falls, there is growing interest in building such databases by paying individuals for their DNA and personal data. This paper maps the ethical issues associated with private companies paying for DNA. We outline the benefits of building better genomic databases and describe possible concerns about crowding out, undue inducement, exploitation, and commodification. While certain (...)
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  9.  21
    Dual-use implications of AI text generation.Julian J. Koplin - 2023 - Ethics and Information Technology 25 (2):1-11.
    AI researchers have developed sophisticated language models capable of generating paragraphs of 'synthetic text' on topics specified by the user. While AI text generation has legitimate benefits, it could also be misused, potentially to grave effect. For example, AI text generators could be used to automate the production of convincing fake news, or to inundate social media platforms with machine-generated disinformation. This paper argues that AI text generators should be conceptualised as a dual-use technology, outlines some relevant lessons from earlier (...)
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  10.  20
    Choice, pressure and markets in kidneys.Julian Koplin - 2018 - Journal of Medical Ethics 44 (5):310-313.
    We do not always benefit from the expansion of our choice sets. This is because some options change the context in which we must make decisions in ways that render us worse off than we would have been otherwise. One promising argument against paid living kidney donation holds that having the option of selling a ‘spare’ kidney would impact people facing financial pressures in precisely this way. I defend this argument from two related criticisms: first, that having the option to (...)
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  11.  27
    Burden of Proof in Bioethics.Julian J. Koplin & Michael J. Selgelid - 2015 - Bioethics 29 (9):597-603.
    A common strategy in bioethics is to posit a prima facie case in favour of one policy, and to then claim that the burden of proof falls on those with opposing views. If the burden of proof is not met, it is claimed, then the policy in question should be accepted. This article illustrates, and critically evaluates, examples of this strategy in debates about the sale of organs by living donors, human enhancement, and the precautionary principle. We highlight general problems (...)
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  12.  15
    From blood donation to kidney sales: the gift relationship and transplant commercialism.Julian J. Koplin - 2015 - Monash Bioethics Review 33 (2-3):102-122.
    In The Gift Relationship, Richard Titmuss argued that the practice of altruistic blood donation fosters social solidarity while markets in blood erode it. This paper considers the implications of this line of argument for the organ market debate. I defend Titmuss’ arguments against a number of criticisms and respond to claims that Titmuss’ work is not relevant to the context of live donor organ transplantation. I conclude that Titmuss’ arguments are more resilient than many advocates of organ markets suggest, and (...)
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  13.  8
    Response to the ISSCR guidelines on human–animal chimera research.Julian J. Koplin - 2023 - Bioethics 37 (2):192-198.
    The International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) has recently released the 2021 update of its guidelines. The update includes detailed new recommendations on human–animal chimera research. This paper argues that the ISSCR recommendations fail to address the core ethical concerns raised by neurological chimeras—namely, concerns about moral status. In minimising moral status concerns, the ISSCR both breaks rank with other major reports on human–animal chimera research and rely on controversial claims about the grounds of moral status that many people (...)
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  14.  15
    Why genomics researchers are sometimes morally required to hunt for secondary findings.Julian J. Koplin, Julian Savulescu & Danya F. Vears - 2020 - BMC Medical Ethics 21 (1):1-11.
    Genomic research can reveal ‘unsolicited’ or ‘incidental’ findings that are of potential health or reproductive significance to participants. It is widely thought that researchers have a moral obligation, grounded in the duty of easy rescue, to return certain kinds of unsolicited findings to research participants. It is less widely thought that researchers have a moral obligation to actively look for health-related findings. This paper examines whether there is a moral obligation, grounded in the duty of easy rescue, to actively hunt (...)
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  15.  39
    Commodification and Human Interests.Julian J. Koplin - 2018 - Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 15 (3):429-440.
    In Markets Without Limits and a series of related papers, Jason Brennan and Peter Jaworski argue that it is morally permissible to buy and sell anything that it is morally permissible to possess and exchange outside of the market. Accordingly, we should open markets in “contested commodities” including blood, gametes, surrogacy services, and transplantable organs. This paper clarifies some important aspects of the case for market boundaries and in so doing shows why there are in fact moral limits to the (...)
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  16. Generative AI entails a credit–blame asymmetry.Sebastian Porsdam Mann, Brian D. Earp, Sven Nyholm, John Danaher, Nikolaj Møller, Hilary Bowman-Smart, Joshua Hatherley, Julian Koplin, Monika Plozza, Daniel Rodger, Peter V. Treit, Gregory Renard, John McMillan & Julian Savulescu - 2023 - Nature Machine Intelligence 5 (5):472-475.
    Generative AI programs can produce high-quality written and visual content that may be used for good or ill. We argue that a credit–blame asymmetry arises for assigning responsibility for these outputs and discuss urgent ethical and policy implications focused on large-scale language models.
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  17.  11
    Moving from ‘fully’ to ‘appropriately’ informed consent in genomics: The PROMICE framework.Julian J. Koplin, Christopher Gyngell, Julian Savulescu & Danya F. Vears - 2022 - Bioethics 36 (6):655-665.
    Genomic sequencing technologies (GS) pose novel challenges not seen in older genetic technologies, making traditional standards for fully informed consent difficult or impossible to meet. This is due to factors including the complexity of the test and the broad range of results it may identify. Meaningful informed consent is even more challenging to secure in contexts involving significant time constraints and emotional distress, such as when rapid genomic testing (RGS) is performed in neonatal intensive care units. In this article, we (...)
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  18.  45
    The Body as Gift, Commodity, or Something in Between: Ethical Implications of Advanced Kidney Donation.Julian J. Koplin - 2017 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 42 (5):575-596.
    An innovative program recently initiated at the University of California, Los Angeles Medical Center allows people to donate a kidney in exchange for a voucher that a loved one can redeem for a kidney if and when needed. As a relatively new practice, the ethical implications of advanced kidney donation have not yet been widely discussed. This paper reflects on some of the bioethical issues at stake in this new donation program, as well as some broader philosophical issues related to (...)
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  19.  39
    Beyond Fair Benefits: Reconsidering Exploitation Arguments Against Organ Markets.Julian J. Koplin - 2018 - Health Care Analysis 26 (1):33-47.
    One common objection to establishing regulated live donor organ markets is that such markets would be exploitative. Perhaps surprisingly, exploitation arguments against organ markets have been widely rejected in the philosophical literature on the subject. It is often argued that concerns about exploitation should be addressed by increasing the price paid to organ sellers, not by banning the trade outright. I argue that this analysis rests on a particular conception of exploitation, and outline two additional ways that the charge of (...)
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  20.  14
    The Moral Relevance of Humanization.Julian J. Koplin - 2021 - American Journal of Bioethics 21 (1):59-61.
    Greely’s target article outlines six categories of ethical issues associated with human brain surrogate research. Some of these issues are familiar from other research contexts; others, less...
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  21.  12
    The ambiguous lessons of the Iranian model of paid living kidney donation: Fry-Revere, S. . The kidney sellers: a journey of discovery in Iran.Julian J. Koplin - 2014 - Monash Bioethics Review 32 (3-4):284-290.
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  22.  10
    Should AI allocate livers for transplant? Public attitudes and ethical considerations.Max Drezga-Kleiminger, Joanna Demaree-Cotton, Julian Koplin, Julian Savulescu & Dominic Wilkinson - 2023 - BMC Medical Ethics 24 (1):1-11.
    Background: Allocation of scarce organs for transplantation is ethically challenging. Artificial intelligence (AI) has been proposed to assist in liver allocation, however the ethics of this remains unexplored and the view of the public unknown. The aim of this paper was to assess public attitudes on whether AI should be used in liver allocation and how it should be implemented. Methods: We first introduce some potential ethical issues concerning AI in liver allocation, before analysing a pilot survey including online responses (...)
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  23.  7
    Organs, embryos, and part-human chimeras: further applications of the social account of dignity.Julian Koplin - 2018 - Monash Bioethics Review 36 (1-4):86-93.
    In their recent paper in this journal, Zümrüt Alpinar-Şencan and colleagues review existing dignity-based objections to organ markets and outline a new form of dignity-based objection they believe has more merit: one grounded in a social account of dignity. This commentary clarifies some aspects of the social account of dignity and then shows how this revised account can be applied to other perennial issues in bioethics, including the ethics of human embryo research and the ethics of creating part-human chimeras.
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  24.  5
    Bioethics Should Not Be Constrained by Linguistic Oddness or Social Offense.Julian Savulescu, Neera Bhatia, Tessa Holzman & Julian Koplin - 2024 - American Journal of Bioethics 24 (1):15-18.
    Blumenthal-Barby (2024) argues that bioethicists should stop using the concept of "personhood" in both well-established bioethics debates (e.g., regarding cognitive disability) and emerging ones (e...
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  25. Kidney Sales and the Burden of Proof.Julian Koplin & Michael Selgelid - 2019 - Journal of Practical Ethics 7 (3):32-53.
    Janet Radcliffe Richards’ The Ethics of Transplants outlines a novel framework for moral inquiry in practical contexts and applies it to the topic of paid living kidney donation. In doing so, Radcliffe Richards makes two key claims: that opponents of organ markets bear the burden of proof, and that this burden has not yet been satisfied. This paper raises four related objections to Radcliffe Richards’ methodological framework, focusing largely on how Radcliffe Richards uses this framework in her discussion of kidney (...)
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  26.  24
    Response to Open Peer Commentaries on “Assessing the Likely Harms to Kidney Vendors in Regulated Organ Markets”.Julian Koplin - 2014 - American Journal of Bioethics 14 (10):1-3.
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  27.  5
    The Parliamentary Inquiry into Mitochondrial Donation Law Reform (Maeve’s Law) Bill 2021 in Australia: A Qualitative Analysis.Jemima W. Allen, Christopher Gyngell, Julian J. Koplin & Danya F. Vears - forthcoming - Journal of Bioethical Inquiry:1-14.
    Recently, Australia became the second jurisdiction worldwide to legalize the use of mitochondrial donation technology. The Mitochondrial Donation Law Reform (Maeve’s Law) Bill 2021 allows individuals with a family history of mitochondrial disease to access assisted reproductive techniques that prevent the inheritance of mitochondrial disease. Using inductive content analysis, we assessed submissions sent to the Senate Committee as part of a programme of scientific inquiry and public consultation that informed drafting of the Bill. These submissions discussed a range of bioethical (...)
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  28.  6
    The Moral Superiority of Bioengineered Wombs and Ectogenesis for Absolute Uterine Factor Infertility.Evie Kendal & Julian J. Koplin - 2022 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 31 (1):73-82.
    This paper argues that uterine transplants are a potentially dangerous distraction from the development of alternative methods of providing reproductive options for women with absolute uterine factor infertility. We consider two alternatives in particular: the bioengineering of wombs using stem cells and ectogenesis. Whether biologically or mechanically engineered, these womb replacements could provide a way for women to have children, including genetically related offspring for those who would value this possibility. Most importantly, this alternative would avoid the challenge of sourcing (...)
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  29.  10
    Consequences and Kidneys.Julian J. Koplin - 2017 - International Journal of Applied Philosophy 31 (2):137-148.
    Kidney for Sale by Owner discusses a range of different arguments that can be offered in defence of live donor kidney markets. Although Cherry’s case for establishing such markets does not rest on consequentialist considerations, Cherry nonetheless suggests that allowing the sale of organs would have net positive consequences. He argues that both renal failure patients and people living in poverty could benefit from participating in the market, and further claims that a legal trade in organs would not shape society (...)
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  30.  11
    Consequences and Kidneys.Julian J. Koplin - 2017 - International Journal of Applied Philosophy 31 (2):137-148.
    Kidney for Sale by Owner discusses a range of different arguments that can be offered in defence of live donor kidney markets. Although Cherry’s case for establishing such markets does not rest on consequentialist considerations, Cherry nonetheless suggests that allowing the sale of organs would have net positive consequences. He argues that both renal failure patients and people living in poverty could benefit from participating in the market, and further claims that a legal trade in organs would not shape society (...)
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  31.  4
    Growing Human Organs Inside Animals.Julian Koplin & Neera Bhatia - 2023 - In Erick Valdés & Juan Alberto Lecaros (eds.), Handbook of Bioethical Decisions. Volume I: Decisions at the Bench. Springer Verlag. pp. 607-623.
    This chapter considers the prospect of generating human organs within chimeric animals comprised of a mix of human and animal cells. Although seemingly farfetched – the term ‘chimera’ even means, in some modern usage, a “mere wild fancy” or “unfounded conception” (Oxford English Dictionary (n.d.) ‘chimera | chimaera, n.’, OED Online. Oxford University Press. Available at: https://www.oed.com/view/Entry/31708) – recent research into interspecies blastocyst complementation is paving the way toward growing human organs inside of human-animal chimeras, potentially within the not-too-distant future (...)
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  32.  20
    How should we treat human–pig chimeras, non-chimeric pigs and other beings of uncertain moral status?Julian Koplin & Dominic Wilkinson - 2019 - Journal of Medical Ethics 45 (7):457-458.
    Our recent article begins by describing a new technique for creating human–animal chimeras. This technique—known as interspecies blastocyst complementation—may enable us to generate human organs inside of human–pig chimeras. One central concern about farming human–pig chimeras for their organs is that their moral status would be uncertain and potentially significant. Our article is partly, but not only, about such concerns. At the heart of our paper are two broader questions. First, how should we treat beings of uncertain moral status? And (...)
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  33.  4
    How useful is the category of ‘assisted gestative technologies’?Julian Koplin - 2023 - Journal of Medical Ethics 49 (5):350-351.
    Elizabeth Chloe Romanis argues that surrogacy, uterine transplantation (UTx) and ectogestation belong to a genus of ‘assisted gestative technologies” (“AGTs”).1 These technologies are conceptually distinct from assisted reproductive technologies (ARTs) in that they support gestation rather than conception. Romanis argues that they also raise some overlapping ethical and policy issues that are best appreciated by ‘considering these technologies together’, thus placing the issues that AGT’s share at the forefront of ethical analysis. The neologism ‘AGTs’ picks out a distinctive and important (...)
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  34.  14
    ‘It’s not worse than eating them’: the limits of analogy in bioethics.Julian J. Koplin - 2020 - Monash Bioethics Review 38 (2):129-145.
    Bioethicists often defend novel practices by drawing analogies with practices that we are already familiar with and currently tolerate. If some novel practice is less bad than some widely-accepted practice, then (it is argued) we cannot rightly reject it. Using the bioethics literature on xenotransplantation and interspecies blastocyst complementation as a case study, I show how this style of argument can go awry. The key problem is that our moral intuitions about familiar practices can be distorted by their seeming normality. (...)
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  35.  20
    Julian J. Koplin Replies.Julian J. Koplin - 2020 - Hastings Center Report 50 (1):46-46.
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  36.  10
    Old Challenges or New Issues? Genetic Health Professionals’ Experiences Obtaining Informed Consent in Diagnostic Genomic Sequencing.Danya F. Vears, Pascal Borry, Julian Savulescu & Julian J. Koplin - 2021 - AJOB Empirical Bioethics 12 (1):12-23.
    Background While integrating genomic sequencing into clinical care carries clear medical benefits, it also raises difficult ethical questions. Compared to traditional sequencing technologies, genomic sequencing and analysis is more likely to identify unsolicited findings (UF) and variants that cannot be classified as benign or disease-causing (variants of uncertain significance; VUS). UF and VUS pose new challenges for genetic health professionals (GHPs) who are obtaining informed consent for genomic sequencing from patients.Methods We conducted semi-structured interviews with 31 GHPs across Europe, Australia (...)
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  37.  14
    Old Challenges or New Issues? Genetic Health Professionals’ Experiences Obtaining Informed Consent in Diagnostic Genomic Sequencing.Danya F. Vears, Pascal Borry, Julian Savulescu & Julian J. Koplin - 2021 - AJOB Empirical Bioethics 12 (1):12-23.
    Background While integrating genomic sequencing into clinical care carries clear medical benefits, it also raises difficult ethical questions. Compared to traditional sequencing technologies, genomic sequencing and analysis is more likely to identify unsolicited findings (UF) and variants that cannot be classified as benign or disease-causing (variants of uncertain significance; VUS). UF and VUS pose new challenges for genetic health professionals (GHPs) who are obtaining informed consent for genomic sequencing from patients.Methods We conducted semi-structured interviews with 31 GHPs across Europe, Australia (...)
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  38.  25
    Emerging moral status issues. [REVIEW]Christopher Gyngell & Julian J. Koplin - 2020 - Monash Bioethics Review 38 (2):95-104.
    Many controversies in bioethics turn on questions of moral status. Some moral status issues have received extensive bioethical attention, including those raised by abortion, embryo experimentation, and animal research. Beyond these established debates lie a less familiar set of moral status issues, many of which are tied to recent scientific breakthroughs. This review article surveys some key developments that raise moral status issues, including the development of in vitro brains, part-human animals, “synthetic” embryos, and artificial womb technologies. It introduces the (...)
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