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The Obama administration has expanded the number of stem cell lines created with private money that federally funded scientists could research, up from the 21 that President George W. Bush had allowed to at least 75 so far. To qualify, parents who donate the original embryo must be told of other options, such as donating to another infertile woman.

Congress twice passed legislation specifically calling for tax-funded stem cell research, which Bush vetoed.

Alan Leshner, chief executive officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, said that “the decision normalizes the original judgments made by policymakers _ that you could use cells developed with non-government money. What we need is to pursue all approaches _ adult stem cells, embryonic stem cells, core blood. The overall promise is so great that we can’t afford to pick one approach prematurely.”


Associated Press writer Pete Yost contributed to this report.