Should mitochondrial donation be anonymous?

Appleby, John B. (2018) Should mitochondrial donation be anonymous? Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, 43 (2). pp. 261-280. ISSN 0360-5310

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Currently in the United Kingdom, anyone donating gametes has the status of an open-identity donor. This means that, at the age of 18, persons conceived with gametes donated since April 1, 2005 have a right to access certain pieces of identifying information about their donor. However, in early 2015, the UK Parliament approved new regulations that make mitochondrial donors anonymous. Both mitochondrial donation and gamete donation are similar in the basic sense that they involve the contribution of gamete materials to create future persons. Given this similarity, this paper presumes that both types of donor should be treated the same and made open-identity under the law, unless there is a convincing argument for treating them differently. I argue that none of the existing arguments that have been made so far in favor of mitochondrial donor anonymity are convincing and mitochondrial donors should therefore be treated as open-identity donors under UK law.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Journal of Medicine and Philosophy
Additional Information:
This is a pre-copy-editing, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in Journal of Medicine and Philosophy following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated versionJohn B Appleby; Should Mitochondrial Donation Be Anonymous?, The Journal of Medicine and Philosophy: A Forum for Bioethics and Philosophy of Medicine, Volume 43, Issue 2, 13 March 2018, Pages 261–280, is available online at:
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? mitochondriageneanonymitydisclosuredonationethicsbioethicsmoral philiosophymitochondrial replacementmitochondrial donationpronuclear transfermaternal spindle transferphilosophyissues, ethics and legal aspectsmedicine(all) ??
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Deposited On:
03 Nov 2016 14:30
Last Modified:
05 Apr 2024 23:44