- Obama military strategy too weak for future security, panel reports
- Sen. Tom Coburn vows to slow down budget-busting bills ahead of recess
- Obama fantasizes about more executive power, signs new order on federal contractors
- Clintons call Klein, Halper, Kessler ‘a Hat Trick of despicable actors’: report
- Boehner accuses Obama of ‘legacy of lawlessness’
- Pro-marijuana group claims responsibility for Brooklyn Bridge flag swap
- Young adults shun Obamacare mostly due to cost: survey
- Stabbing attack on transgender girl, 15, was ‘bias motivated,’ police say
- LGBT adults still lean overwhelmingly toward Democratic Party
- Lawmakers rattled by Syria genocide horrors, call on Obama to act
Bush’s belated victory: Pro-life groups celebrate ethical shift in stem cell research
Question of the Day
Pro-life groups, which are eager to end research that destroys human embryos, are taking heart that funding decisions in two of the nation’s most socially liberal states are going their way.
“Money talks,” said Gene Tarne, author of papers for the Charlotte Lozier Institute that find that the bulk of stem cell funding grants in California and Maryland are moving toward “ethical” research that doesn’t use human embryos.
The shift looks like a sea change from when state funding strongly favored research from embryonic stem cells over “adult” stem cells, which are taken from the placenta, umbilical cord and some mature tissues and do not kill human embryos.
However, the hunt for cures for diseases, along with federal and private funding for embryonic stem cell research, virtually guarantees that embryonic stem cell research and the moral battles over it are likely to continue for the foreseeable future.
The World Stem Cell Summit this week in San Diego promises to share updates on a “complete 360 view of the stem-cell field” and says no type of research should be excluded.
“The patient community is not so concerned about the source of the cell — it is all about developing effective treatments,” said Bernard Siegel, executive director of Genetics Policy Institute in Florida, which hosts the summit.
The summit will honor South Dakota philanthropist T. Denny Sanford for his $100 million investment in a California stem cell research center. All kinds of stem cell research projects are expected to be funded at the Sanford Stem Cell Clinical Center at the University of California at San Diego.
Meanwhile, a Kansas stem cell research center that, by law, won’t use stem cells culled from human embryos also is taking off.
“This is the beginning,” Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback said Nov. 23, when the Midwest Stem Cell Therapy Center held its inaugural conference. “We are catching it right as the field is really starting to burgeon,” he said, according to the Kansas Health Institute News Service.
The center — approved in April by the Kansas Legislature and Mr. Brownback — is “a visionary move” to “support science that can actually lead to a lot of new therapies and potentially change the face of medicine,” said Dr. Buddhadeb Dawn, director of the center, which is housed at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City.
Excluding embryonic stem cell research is not an impediment, Dr. Dawn said.
“Adult stem cells are the ones that have been shown to be effective for patient treatment,” he said.
The hunt for cures
Stem cells excite scientists because they are regenerative — self-renewing — and have the potential to be grown into any type of cell. This has led many people to believe stem cell therapies one day will cure or treat many conditions, including blindness, cancer, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, heart disease and spinal cord injuries.
The dispute in stem cell research is over cells taken from human embryos, the stage of human development that follows fertilization.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Cheryl Wetzstein covers family and social issues as a national reporter for The Washington Times. She has been a reporter for three decades, working in New York City and Washington, D.C. Since joining The Washington Times in 1985, she has been a features writer, environmental and consumer affairs reporter, and assistant business editor.
Beginning in 1994, Mrs. Wetzstein worked exclusively ...
- Massachusetts lawmakers OK new abortion clinic buffer law
- Mississippi abortion law can't be enforced
- Federal appeals court rules against Virginia's gay marriage ban
- Events honoring 20th National Parents' Day reaffirm family
- '50 Shades' movie trailer outrages anti-porn groups
Latest Blog Entries
- Gay therapy ban author seeks Calif. House seat
- Transgender 'bathroom law' gets 5,000 more signatures
- Pro-life, stem-cell bill signed into law by Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback
- N. Dakota lawmakers approve tough abortion bill
- Pope Benedict XVI's successor should allow priests to get a new title: Husband, poll finds
TWT Video Picks
By Ted Cruz
Israel saves its enemies; Hamas endangers its friends
- Inside the Ring: Israel surprised by Hamas tunnel network
- Army's 3-D printed bombs to create 'a whole new universe' of lethal capabilities
- GOP leaders delay border bill, leave Obama in control
- Chicken pox outbreak puts illegal immigrant facility on lockdown
- CIA admits improperly hacking Senate computers in search of Bush-era information
- CRUZ: A tale of two hospitals: One in Israel, one in Gaza
- Report: 40% of weapons sent to Afghanistan are unaccounted for
- 3 African leaders cancel trip to U.S. over Ebola outbreak; Obama still plans summit
- Israel surprised by Hamas tunnel network
- Colorado poll shows women tuning out Democrats' 'war on women' strategy
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world