News Brief: Claim: Woman is pregnant with cloned embryo

A woman participating in a human cloning effort is eight weeks pregnant, apparently with a cloned human embryo, according to Severino Antinori, an Italian fertility specialist who has declared an intention to clone a human being.

Antinori made the claim at a meeting in February held in the United Arab Emirates, according to the publication New Scientist.com.

Although the doctor refused to disclose the nationality of the woman or her location, and did not specifically indicate she was carrying a human clone, he said that 5,000 couples are currently involved in the program, the report stated.

Several noted cloning researchers in this country have previously condemned plans by Antinori and Louisville, KY, fertility specialist Panos Zavos to produce a cloned human being, citing safety concerns and the high number of miscarriages, malformed newborns, and premature deaths among animals that have been cloned.