chapter  4
10 Pages

Nuremberg Code in Light of Previous Principles and Practices in Human Experimentation

WithDavid Rothman

In the fifty years since the issuance of the Nuremberg Code, the ethics of human experimentation has assumed such centrality in social thought and public policy that it requires an act of imagination to recall just how novel this event was. Nuremberg represented the first attempt to set forth and enforce an explicit set of principles, literally a code, in the conduct of human experimentation. Whatever weaknesses commentators would later identify, and whatever refinements marked the content of successor codes, Nuremberg was the pioneer effort to implement standards that clinical investigators were required to observe.