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The University of Minnesota is proceeding with embryonic stem cell research, despite an anti-abortion group’s claim that it is illegal under a new ban on the use of state tax dollars for human cloning.
Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life called on the university Tuesday to “cease its pursuit of human cloning and to end its violation of state law through its ongoing destruction of human embryos.” The organization cited the new cloning ban, along with legislative testimony from a U executive that the ban would stifle “ongoing” research if passed.
University spokeswoman Mary Koppel said the executive’s comments referred
We have been told for almost a decade that stem cells are the future of medicine: that these tiny clumps of tissue could become a biological “repair kit”, able to regenerate or heal almost any part of the body. But amid all the prophecies of patches for damaged hearts, new nerve cells for spinal injuries or stroke victims, and insulin-producing cells for diabetics, few people predicted that it would be British-based scientists who would be leading the way in mapping out this new terrain.
Writing in The Daily Telegraph last week, Professor Steve Jones bemoaned the failure of
Sierra Fedelem may look like any other 20-month-old, but her parents are doing everything they can to make sure her life is just like that of any other healthy human being.
Stem cell research has stirred quite the controversy in the United States, and though the current administration’s recent policy reversal on the issue could open the markets to treatments and commercialization, it’s still an option unavailable for American patients, like Sierra, unless they’re willing to travel across the world.
“The first time the neurologist said, ‘No, you don’t realize it, she’s never going to be able to walk, talk and
Adult stem cell research has produced treatments for 73 different conditions, while embryonic stem cell research has not produced a single therapy or helped a single patient. But those facts were conveniently omitted from a recent column advocating increased taxpayer funding of embryonic stem cell research (“Stem cell opportunity,” Commentary, Feb. 20).
The column also neglected to mention the biggest advance in stem cell research in the last decade – the creation of induced pluripotent stem cells.
That development allows researchers to reprogram adult stem cells to behave like embryonic stem cells without destroying human embryos. It was hailed by the
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Just as Barack Obama has loosened the regulations on embryonic stem cell research in the USA, the Austrian Commission of Bioethics (which advises the government) has decided to implement more liberal regulation. Today in Austria it is prohibited to produce embryonic stem cells, but it is allowed to import them from abroad. These cells are expensive and research is hindered by high costs. The majority of the Commission has advised, with a 17 to 5 vote, that the use of excess embryonic stem cells from assisted fertilization procedures be made legal.