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April 19: Colloquium on ethics in biotechnologies

FREDERICK, Md.—A leader in biomedical ethics will speak about the possibilities and ethical issues involved in biotechnologies April 19 at Hood College.

Angel Petropanagos, Ph.D., will present “Making Dreams Possible? Exploring the Ethics of Emerging Biotechnologies” as part of the William J. and Wilma M. Haines Lecture in biomedical ethics at 7 p.m. in the Cheryl Brown Dreiling ’79 Coblentz Seminar Room.

Petropanagos will discuss how recent advancements in egg freezing, uterine transplantation and the CRISPR-Cas9 system for gene editing are dramatically changing the landscape of human reproduction. She will posit that, although these technologies can make some reproductive dreams come true, they raise a number of ethical concerns. Using a feminist relational lens that prioritizes the importance of social and political contexts, she will problematize the “reproductive promises” made by these technologies and explore strategies for alleviating some of the ethical concerns surrounding these biotechnologies.

Petropanagos is a postdoctoral fellow and research associate at Novel Tech Ethics in the faculty of medicine at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. She is also a visiting researcher at the Joint Centre for Bioethics at the University of Toronto. She earned her doctorate in philosophy at the University of Western Ontario with specializations in bioethics and feminist philosophy. She is the co-chair for the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society’s Ethics and Law Special Interest Group and the managing editor for the Impact Ethics blog at

She is currently researching the ethics of fertility preservation in the pediatric cancer context. More generally, she is interested in the ways that social values, norms and power relations can shape human reproduction and family building.

This event is free and open to the public, funded in part by a National Endowment for the Humanities challenge grant. For more information, contact Katy Fulfer at or 301-696-3211 or visit