SWITZERLAND – Investments in Stem Cell Research

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Halfway through February, the National Swiss Fund has established a national plan for stem cell research and regenerative medicine, providing 10 million francs (6,766,000 euros) in financing over 5 years. In November, the Foundation will make a decision on projects that have already been submitted. In January 2010, those which have been approved will get underway. The objective is to favor basic biological stem cell and regenerative medicine research, and to spread awareness internationally.

At the end of 2004 in a referendum, Swiss citizens approved a law that allows the use of excess embryonic stem cells from fertility clinics. Researchers assert that regulations, which are too restrictive, do not provide enough embryos for research. In the political world, liberal Senator Felix Gutzwiller is one of the most highly aware the criticisms made by scientists. He is willing to promote further modifications to legislation and to the Constitution, although it is expected that he will meet stiff opposition from ecologists and religious groups.

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