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News Posted on November 24, 2015

Professor Ikemoto Comments for New York Times, San Jose Mercury News on Frozen Embryo Case

Professor Lisa Ikemoto commented for the New York Times and San Jose Mercury News on a San Francisco Superior Court judge's decision to order the destruction of a divorced couple's frozen embryos pursuant to an agreement they signed prior to the breakup of their marriage.

"On these facts, enforcing the agreement seems appropriate," Ikemoto told the Mercury News. "The opinion does a nice job of marshaling the facts that support a conclusion [that the couple] understood the document and did intend at that time that the embryos should be destroyed if they divorced."

Though similar cases have been decided with similar results in other states, the California case has been closely watched nationwide, in part because a disproportionate number of the nation's frozen embryos exist in California.

"The case itself doesn't have that much precedential value as a legal matter because it's a lower court decision," Ikemoto said in an interview with the New York Times. "But everybody has been waiting for a case to come up in California because there are so many clinics here."

Lisa Ikemoto teaches bioethics and health law courses at the UC Davis School of Law.  She has written extensively on genetic and reproductive technology, the regulation of fertility and pregnancy, and race and gender disparities in health care.  Her current work examines emerging issues in regenerative medicine, including stem cell research, and the human tissues market.

New York Times

San Jose Mercury News