Obama reverses Bush on Stem Cell Research! Yes he did!

Today Obama earned my vote even if he did nothing else right. He reversed Bush on Stem Cell Research and he funded it too! That is very important to my family. Thank you President Obama.

As President Obama reversed the Bush administration’s limits on embryonic stem-cell research, he said scientific decisions must be “based on facts, not ideology.”

The president on Monday signaled a clear shift in tone from the Bush administration on a broad range of scientific issues.

Obama overturned an order signed by President Bush in 2001 that barred the National Institutes of Health from funding research on embryonic stem cells beyond using 60 cell lines that existed at that time.

Bush twice vetoed legislation — in July 2006 and June 2007 — that would have expanded federally funded embryonic stem cell research.

Because stem cells have the potential to turn into any organ or tissue cell in the body, research advocates say they could yield cures to debilitating conditions such as diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and spinal injuries. But because work on embryonic stem cells involves the destruction of human embryos, many conservatives supported the limits Bush imposed by executive order in 2001.

Dr. Harold Varmus, president of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and co-chairman of Obama’s science advisory council, said Sunday that Obama will “endorse the notion that public policy must be guided by sound, scientific advice.”

Obama’s order will direct the National Institutes of Health to develop revised guidelines on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research within 120 days, said Varmus, who joined Barnes in the conference call with reporters.

“The president is, in effect, allowing federal funding of human embryonic stem cell research to the extent that it’s permitted by law — that is, work with stem cells themselves, not the derivation of stem cells,” he said.


Stem Cell Research has been used for years in other developed countries.

In the case of Claudia Castillo, a 30-year-old Colombian mother of two living in Barcelona, her own adult stem cells have been used to grow a new section of trachea — an airway essential for breathing. It is a first and could revolutionize stem cell use.

To better explain Embryonic Stem Cell Research.

Scientists typically work with two kinds of stem cells: embryonic stem cells and adult stem cells, which have different functions and characteristics.

Till now, scientists have believed the most useful stem cells have come from embryos.

This is because embryonic cells are pluripotent — they have the ability to become any type of cell.

They have also been comparatively easy to grow in lab conditions, proving much more useful to researchers who require a large number of cells for replacement therapies.

However, stem cells are also found in adult organs and it is these cells that will now become the focus of more research. They are rarer and have been much harder to grow in the lab. They have been considered much less pluripotent.

The advantage of using adult stem cells is that they can be taken from the patient and then reintroduced, meaning rejection by the immune system is not a problem.


~ by citizenjournalistreview on March 9, 2009.

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