A black and white photo of a woman in a plumed hat in a laboratory classroom with several men
Birth of The Pill, 1956–1960
Researchers overseeing the clinical trial for the first FDA-approved oral contraceptive claimed the drug gave the Puerto Rican participants power over their family planning. Critics claimed the women were exploited.
Birth of The Pill, 1956–1960
Birth of The Pill, 1956–1960

Researchers overseeing the clinical trial for the first FDA-approved oral contraceptive claimed the drug gave the Puerto Rican participants power over their family planning. Critics claimed the women were exploited.

Researchers overseeing the clinical trial for the first FDA-approved oral contraceptive claimed the drug gave the Puerto Rican participants power over their family planning. Critics claimed the women were exploited.

bioethics
A postcard from the early 1900s depicting an Indigenous midden in Damariscotta, Maine.
Sticks and Bones, Circa 8000 BCE
Dan Robitzski | Sep 1, 2022
Ancient stashes of animal bones, tools, and other artifacts are often dismissed as archaic garbage heaps, but the deposits provide glimpses of the cultural practices and environmental conditions of past Indigenous settlements.
Cover of When Animals Dream: A colourful illustration of an octopus.<br><br>
Book Excerpt from When Animals Dream
David M. Peña-Guzmán | Aug 25, 2022
In Chapter 1, “The Science of Animal Dreams,” author David M. Peña-Guzmán relays the history of researchers digging into the mental realities of nonhuman brains.
Cover of When Animals Dream: A colourful illustration of an octopus.<br><br>
Opinion: Animal Dreaming Should Give Us Ethical Pause
David M. Peña-Guzmán | Aug 15, 2022
Research shows that humans aren’t the only animals whose imaginations run wild while they sleep.
Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V computer keyboard button with cable isolated on white background
Opinion: The Reproductive Technology Advances No One Asked For
John D. Loike and Alan Kadish | Jun 22, 2022
Cloning and parthenogenesis of humans wouldn’t align with bioethical principles.
Octopus in tank lined with black dots
Do Invertebrates Have Emotions?
Natalia Mesa | May 26, 2022
And how do scientists go about answering that question?
Zebrafish with fluorescent nervous system in green.
Oust the Mouse: A Plan to Reduce Mammal Use in Drug Development
Natalia Mesa | Mar 15, 2022
The Scientist spoke to Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory’s Jim Strickland about the institute’s new MDI Bioscience initiative to perform more drug testing and development in nonmammalian models.
A photo of a skeleton on a black background
Ancient DNA Boom Underlines a Need for Ethical Frameworks
Amanda Heidt | Jan 27, 2022
The field of ancient DNA, which combines archaeology and anthropology with cutting-edge genetics, is requiring scientists to have frank conversations about when research is justified and who it benefits.
Multiple purple and pink renditions of stem cells appear as spherical clusters enveloped in translucent bubbles
Mammalian Embryos Might Not Need Primitive Streaks After All
Dan Robitzski | Dec 2, 2021
The primitive streak, a structure that emerges during mammalian and avian gastrulation, might be a byproduct rather than a landmark of the embryonic development process.
Great Minds Don't Think Alike
Book Excerpt from Great Minds Don't Think Alike
Marcelo Gleiser | Dec 1, 2021
In the introduction, editor Marcelo Gleiser establishes the need for dialogue across the science-humanities divide in academia.
Great Minds Don't Think Alike
Opinion: Bridging the Intellectual Divide
Marcelo Gleiser | Dec 1, 2021
To solve modern problems, we must integrate the sciences and the humanities and think across these traditionally disparate disciplines.
Hong Kong skyline with a pink sky in the background
Book excerpt from CRISPR People
Henry T. Greely | Aug 1, 2021
In Chapter 6, author Henry T. Greely describes how news of the birth of gene-edited babies rocked a 2018 summit on human genome editing.
Opinion: How Biomedicine Could Transform Human Reproduction
Henry T. Greely | Aug 1, 2021
CRISPR and other innovations are likely to open up a wealth of new options for how people have children.
cartoon showing a hand taking a tool to a double-helix of DNA to represent gene editing
WHO Releases New Recommendations on Human Genome Editing
Annie Melchor | Jul 12, 2021
The guidance comes after two years of consulting with hundreds of stakeholders, including indigenous peoples, religious leaders, patient groups, and scientists.
photo of a researcher looking in a microscope fertilising an egg via intracytoplasmic sperm injection.
Human Stem Cell Research Guidelines Updated
Ruth Williams | May 26, 2021
Removal of the 14-day limit for culturing human embryos is one of the main changes in the revised recommendations from the International Society for Stem Cell Research.
fetal cells, fetal stem cells, policy, Biden administration, Trump administration, NIH
NIH Reverses Limits on Human Fetal Tissue Research
Amanda Heidt | Apr 19, 2021
A new ruling removes the requirement that grants and proposals using the material receive approval from an ethical review board, reverting to the process in place before 2019.
ethics, bioethics, brain organoid, chimera, cell transplant, Q&A, report, NIH, NAS, neuroscience, Techniques, disease & medicine, immunology, psychiatric conditions
New Report Dissects Ethics of Emerging Human Brain Cell Models
Amanda Heidt | Apr 12, 2021
The National Academies’ report touches on ethical issues raised by new technologies such as brain organoids and human-animal chimeras, and suggests that current regulatory oversight is sufficient.
Opinion: Facing Assumptions About the Duality of Human and Animal
Melanie Challenger | Apr 1, 2021
Since Darwin published his landmark work on natural selection, we’ve understood that we’re animals. But that doesn’t mean we really believe it.
A Challenge Trial for COVID-19 Would Not Be the First of Its Kind
Jef Akst | Oct 8, 2020
Although scientists debate the ethics of deliberately infecting volunteers with SARS-CoV-2, plenty of consenting participants have been exposed to all sorts of pathogens in prior trials.
human-animal chimeric embryo, chimera, animal studies, pigs, organ transplant, induced pluripotent stem cells, survey, attitudes, public support
Majority of Respondents Support Chimeric Animal Research: Survey
Amanda Heidt | Oct 1, 2020
Almost 60 percent of people in a new study on attitudes in the US felt comfortable using animals to grow human organs from induced pluripotent stem cells.