Seoul (AsiaNews) _ A coalition of 35 women_s groups filed a suit for compensation against the South Korean government on behalf of women suffering from side-effects after making uninformed ova donations to Prof Hwang Woo-suk for his research on stem cell embryos.
The women_s groups in association with Lawyers for a Democratic Society (Minbyun) claim that the donors who provided the _research material_ to the now disgraced researcher received no information on the side effects of excessive ova collection.
During the investigation into the fraudulent study, it was found that Hwang_s team used 2,221 ova, about fivefold the number Hwang had previously claimed, and that about 20 per cent of the donors have suffered side-effects from this invasive practice.
_Fifteen women donated eggs more than twice. The Mizmedi Hospital team even collected ova twice from a woman, who was hospitalized for side-effects after each donation,__ the women_s groups said in a statement. _It is an example of how the embryonic stem cell research, which received full national support, trampled on women_s human rights,_ the press release also said.
The groups claim that the prosecutors_ investigation focused on uncovering the deceit involved in the study but not on issues relating to ova procurement.
The government, they allege, has made no efforts to compensate ova donors for the mental and physical damage they suffered.
_According to the Bioethics Law, researchers, monitoring institutions, and the government are obliged to make efforts so that biomedical technology will meet bioethics guidelines and will not infringe on human dignity and worth,_ said Yu Kyung-hee, standing representative of Korea Womenlink. But _none of the above takes responsibility,_ she added.
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