Maverick Scientist Zavos’ Second Human Cloning Bid Fails

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 28, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Maverick Scientist Zavos’ Second Human Cloning Bid Fails Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
September 28, 2005

London, England ( — Maverick fertility scientist Dr. Panos Zavos has failed a second time in his efforts to clone a human being. The result has pro-life advocates upset because he’s destroyed more unborn children in the process of attempting to perfect the grisly practice.

Zavos, a scientist at the University of Kentucky, said his research team created four cloned human embryos that he implanted in a 33-year-old Middle-Eastern woman. However, none of the unborn children survived the process.

"Zavos has made it clear to the entire world that he intends to keep his name in the headlines at least once every couple of months by making some fantastic claim about his cloning prowess," says Ben Mitchell of the Center for Bioethics and Culture.

"He so desperately wants to go down in history as a cloning pioneer that he is willing to break all the rules of good science, stopping short so far of breaking the law," Mitchell added.

As he has failed to do in the past, Zavos offered no concrete data to substantiate his claims and did not publish his failed research in any peer-reviewed journal. A similar lack of information accompanied his January 2004 attempt to clone human beings.

In that attempt, Zavos placed a single unborn child in the womb of a 25 year-old woman.

Zavos unveiled his latest failures at a press conference in London and he said the cloning procedures took place in a Middle East country he wouldn’t name. He would also not reveal the nationality or the name of the woman who participated in the latest attempt.

Zavos did say the woman’s husband provided the donor cells used to help create the cloned embryos. He said the man was unable to produce any sperm and human cloning was the only method for the couple to have children. Zavos did not mention adoption or other fertility treatments available to the couple.

Despite the failures, Zavos is ready to move forward with more experiments, according The Scotsman newspaper.

"What we know today is what we learn from our failures as well as our successes," he said. "We had great expectations for success."

Zavos claims "hundreds" of couples have contacted him about using human cloning.

After his last announcement, a group of scientists and researchers issued an open letter to media outlets to not give Zavos any further publicity on his unsubstantiated cloning claims.