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Page last updated at 10:33 GMT, Saturday, 14 January 2012

Ethics of scientists are 'crucial'

An Iranian nuclear physicist was assassinated this week - the fourth time in two years that one of their scientists has been attacked.

If he worked on the country's nuclear programme could he be considered a legitimate target?

Colin Blakemore, professor of neuroscience from the University of Oxford, believes that the ethics and integrity of what scientists do is "crucially important". You have to distinguish between deliberate amoral acts by scientists, he says, and the discoveries that are thrown up by science which will have evidence of ethical consequences.

He adds that scientists should be aware of the "misapplication" of their own findings. Professor Blakemore also believes there should be more whistleblowing amongst the scientific community to denounce unethical behaviour.

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