Academic Commons


Regulating Gamete Donation in the U.S.: Ethical, Legal and Social Implications

Sabatello, Maya

This article explores the practice of gamete donation in the U.S. having in mind the larger question of what do we as a society owe children born as a result (donor-conceived children). Do recipient-parents have a duty to tell their donor-conceived child about his/her genetic origins? Should the identity of the donor be disclosed or remain anonymous? Does the child have a right to know her conception story and to receive information, including identifying information, about the donor? Furthermore, if a donor-conceived child has a right to know, who has the duty to tell her/him about it? The Article underscores the ethical, legal and social dilemmas that arise, comparing and contrasting with international developments in this arena. It highlights the market-based and more specific medical justifications for regulating this field, explores the emerging so-called right of the child to know his/her genetic origins (“the right to know”), and considers the challenges such a right evokes to existing legal culture and principles of medical ethics in the U.S. as well as other broader societal implications of such a right.

Geographic Areas


Also Published In

More About This Work

Academic Units
Published Here
April 4, 2017
Academic Commons provides global access to research and scholarship produced at Columbia University, Barnard College, Teachers College, Union Theological Seminary and Jewish Theological Seminary. Academic Commons is managed by the Columbia University Libraries.