The Catholic Institute of Bioethics of the Catholic University of Korea held its 5th Conference with the theme "Ethical Problems of Oocyte Donation and Research" at the grand auditorium of Seoul St. Mary's Hospital of the Catholic University of Korea on May 6, 2009. Four experts presented their papers dealing with the problems in four aspects and seven panels in all from Korea commented on the presented papers.
In her paper entitled "Bioethical Problems Concerning Research and Donation of Eggs - Scientifical and Clinical Aspects", Dr. Mónica López Barahona, Director of VidaCord in Madrid, Spain, asserted that the urgent task of bioethics was education, indicating "the prejudice of some scientists who think that the sanction on some scientific activities amounts to the restriction on the right to know."
In his paper entitled "Anthropological Aspects of Oocyte Donation and Research", Fr. José Noriega, Vice-Chancellor of the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family at the Pontifical Lateran University in Rome, said, "It is the duty of the Church to teach the whole humanity the nature of a human being and what a person has to do. …… The Church and a state can be mutually complementary, as the former shows the way of human beings and the latter establishes corresponding policies."
In his paper entitled "Bioethical Aspects of Oocyte Donation and Research", Prof. Maria Luisa Di Pietro, Member of the National Bioethics Committee of Italy, asserted that the expression "cloning for treatment" itself was absurd, because it resulted in the killing of one life on the pretext of the treatment of a patient. In her paper entitled "Problems of Korean Bioethics Law on Oocyte Donation and Research", Prof. In-Hoe Ku, Director of the Catholic Institute of Bioethics of the Catholic University of Korea, asserted that there was no reason for us to prefer the use of embryonic stem cell for researches on the treatment of patients.
This Conference was also one of the events to commemorate the grand opening of the Seoul St. Mary's Hospital, which opened in March, 2009 after the construction of a new building and renewal of the facilities, as well as the name change from Gangnam St. Mary' Hospital to the present one.