New York's Empire State Stem Cell Board has $600 million in state funding for stem cell studies. The only problem? It needs more stem cells! So the board has decided to let researchers pay women up to $10,000 for the discomfort, time, and expenses involved with donating their eggs for stem cell experiments.
Fans of the unprecedented plan say it removes a great obstacle to finding treatments for life threatening diseases. Researchers say that a lack of compensation made it nearly impossible to convince women to donate their eggs. That may be because the process is not simple. Women have to take hormone injections for weeks that stimulate their ovaries to produce eggs. Then they have to undergo a painful extraction procedure.
Fertility clinics are successful in getting women to undergo the process because they compensate them — so science says it just wants part of the action. Critics say that the practice amounts to human body-part trafficking and worry that underprivileged women will be pressured to donate their eggs for the money.
How much would it take for you to sell your eggs?