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Title: The Donation of Human Biological Material for Brain Organoid Research: The Problems of Consciousness and Consent
Authors: Kataoka, Masanori
Gyngell, Christopher
Savulescu, Julian
Sawai, Tsutomu
Author's alias: 片岡, 雅知
澤井, 努
Keywords: Brain organoids
Consciousness
Consent
Autonomy
Precautionary principle
Issue Date: Feb-2024
Publisher: Springer Nature
Journal title: Science and Engineering Ethics
Volume: 30
Issue: 1
Thesis number: 3
Abstract: Human brain organoids are three-dimensional masses of tissues derived from human stem cells that partially recapitulate the characteristics of the human brain. They have promising applications in many fields, from basic research to applied medicine. However, ethical concerns have been raised regarding the use of human brain organoids. These concerns primarily relate to the possibility that brain organoids may become conscious in the future. This possibility is associated with uncertainties about whether and in what sense brain organoids could have consciousness and what the moral significance of that would be. These uncertainties raise further concerns regarding consent from stem cell donors who may not be sufficiently informed to provide valid consent to the use of their donated cells in human brain organoid research. Furthermore, the possibility of harm to the brain organoids raises question about the scope of the donor’s autonomy in consenting to research involving these entities. Donor consent does not establish the reasonableness of the risk and harms to the organoids, which ethical oversight must ensure by establishing some measures to mitigate them. To address these concerns, we provide three proposals for the consent procedure for human brain organoid research. First, it is vital to obtain project-specific consent rather than broad consent. Second, donors should be assured that appropriate measures will be taken to protect human brain organoids during research. Lastly, these assurances should be fulfilled through the implementation of precautionary measures. These proposals aim to enhance the ethical framework surrounding human brain organoid research.
Description: 脳を作る研究への細胞提供 --細胞提供者を守るための研究者への提言--. 京都大学プレスリリース. 2024-02-27.
Proposals for cell donation procedures to create brain organoids. 京都大学プレスリリース. 2024-02-29.
Rights: © The Author(s) 2024
This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2433/287128
DOI(Published Version): 10.1007/s11948-024-00471-7
PubMed ID: 38315257
Related Link: https://ashbi.kyoto-u.ac.jp/ja/news/20240227_research-result_sawai/
https://ashbi.kyoto-u.ac.jp/news/20240227_research-result_sawai/
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