Britain's prime minister says he backs a new law that would allow the creation of animal-human hybrid embryos.

The embryos are created using empty animal eggs and human genetic material. Scientists say such embryos could be an important source of stem cells. Those in turn could potentially used to treat diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's.

However the technology disturbs some who believe it could lead to the genetic engineering of human beings. Gordon Brown wrote in The Observer Sunday that he supported the research.

British lawmakers are due to vote on the matter next week as part of a series of proposals covering abortion, embryology and genetic screening.