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Region Europe
Population 82,210,000
GDP (millions USD) 3,322,147
National Policies
Eggs for assisted reproduction PROHIBITED
Eggs for research ?
Inheritable genetic modification PROHIBITED
Preimplantation genetic diagnosis PROHIBITED
Reproductive cloning PROHIBITED
Research cloning PROHIBITED
Sex selection "social uses prohibited" is not in the list of possible values (?, PROHIBITED, regulated, Social uses prohibited, no policy) for this property.
International Agreements
1997 COE Biomedicine Convention not signed
1998 COE Cloning Convention not signed
2005 UN Cloning Vote YES
2005 UNESCO Sports Doping Convention RATIFIED
2007 Treaty of Lisbon RATIFIED


Key laws and policies

Prohibited practices

The Federal Embryo Protection Law of 1990 prohibits:

  • Inheritable genetic modification
  • Creating a clonal embryo for any purpose
  • Transferring a clonal embryo into a woman's uterus
  • Sex selection via PGD, even if the intention is to prevent disease.[1]

Violations or attempts are punishable by up to five years' imprisonment or by a fine.

The law's definition of an embryo to be protected specifically includes "each totipotent cell removed from an embryo that is capable, in the presence of other necessary conditions, of dividing and developing into an individual." [2]

It is unclear whether preimplantation genetic diagnosis is prohibited by the Embryo Law.[3] However, the practice does not occur in Germany.[4] It is also unclear whether embryo donation is permitted; again, this does not occur in Germany. Surrogacy is prohibited by a combination of the Embryo Protection and Adoption Brokerage Laws.[5]

Providing eggs for assisted reproduction is prohibited by law.[6]

The German Federal Medical Chamber stipulates that lesbian and single women should not have access to ART, however, there is no legislation prohibiting this.

Permitted and regulated practices

Sex selection by selecting sperm is permitted only to prevent a few special, very serious gender-related genetic diseases (e.g. muscular dystrophy). This applies whether sperm are used for IVF or artificial insemination.[1]

External links


  1. 1.0 1.1 BioNet, "What Is Legal?," accessed on June 12, 2008
  2. Translation by the Genetics and Public Policy Center, accessed on June 12, 2008
  3. Genetics and Public Policy Center, "Reproductive Genetic Testing (Germany)"
  4. German National Ethics Council, "[ Genetic diagnosis before and during pregnancy (PND and PGD)]" (2004)
  5. Victoria Keppler and Michael Bokelmann, "Surrogate motherhood – The legal situation in Germany," The American Surrogacy Center (2000)
  6. American Society for Reproductive Medicine, "IFFS Surveillance 07," Fertility and Sterility (Vol. 87. No. 4, Suppl. 1, April 2007)