Scientists in the U.K. have been given the go-ahead to create human-animal embryos for medical experimentation. They say the move will pave the way for the treatment of new diseases.
The Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority (HFEA) granted permission to do so after a consultation showed the public were "at ease" with the idea.
King's College London and Newcastle University will now be able to begin their work under one-year research licenses.
The embryos are made by implanting genetic material from human donors into eggs from rabbits or cows.
Researchers want to produce "cytoplasmic" hybrids that are 99 percent human and 0.1 percent animal.
Scientists believe they could provide an invaluable source of embryonic stem cells (ESCs) for use in research on human diseases.