The Death of Roe and the Future of Ex Vivo Embryos


Publish Date:
July 3, 2022
Publication Title:
Journal of Law and the Biosciences
Journal Article Volume 9 Issue 2
Related Organization(s):


This article examines the possible effects of the end of a federal constitutional right to abortion on clinical practice and research involving ex vivo human embryos. It first analyzes the likely outcomes of Dobbs v. Mississippi, concluding the Supreme Court will either overrule the federal constitutional abortion right or restrict it in a way that leads to its rapid disappearance. Next, the article discusses a possible increase in use of preimplantation genetic testing as one result. It then forecasts the likely ramifications of such a court decision on state legislation affecting ex vivo human embryos in two ways. It examines the possibility that victory over Roe will inspire embryo support groups to push for limitations on in vitro fertilization, perhaps on its destruction of embryos and more likely on permissible grounds for prospective parents to use in choosing embryos for transfer. It ends by discussing the prospects of new laws in some states banning or limiting research with human embryos.