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Cambridge Reproduction


The SCBEM Code of Practice supports the development of best practice for the generation and use of human stem cell-based embryo models (SCBEMs) for research.

The Code fills a gap in UK governance through:


  • addressing the ethical, legal and regulatory questions specific to SCBEMs;
  • providing guidance on the responsible use of SCBEMs in research; 
  • new oversight and registration systems.


This is the first dedicated guidance for SCBEM research in the UK, but we hope that it will be useful to researchers in other countries.

The Code has been developed through a process of deliberation and consultation, and is founded on principles of trust, transparency and accountability. This pioneering guidance will maintain and build confidence that research involving SCBEMs adheres to robust principles of research integrity and ethics.

The Code was published in July 2024, and was developed by a Working Group of experts from a range of institutions across the UK, representing world-leading expertise in sciences, law, ethics and regulation. The work was led by Cambridge Reproduction, working in partnership with the Progress Educational Trust.


Download the Code of Practice


The SCBEM Code of Practice has been produced as part of a wider project that aims to develop new governance for research involving SCBEMs, and to engage the public with research and regulation in this area.