US President Barack Obama’s 2009 executive order to allow the federal funding of research using new human embryonic stem cell (hESC) lines may become law, March 10, 2010, by Jef Akst  —  Yesterday (March 9), on the one-year anniversary of Obama’s announcement, members of Congress Diana DeGette of Colorado and Mike Castle of Delaware reintroduced the Stem Cell Research Advancement Act to “ensure a lasting ethical framework” for such research. DeGette and Castle were the lead sponsors of the bill when it was introduced during the tenure of former President George W. Bush, who vetoed it twice.

The legislation would codify Obama’s executive order, which overturned the limitations implemented by Bush, and made it possible for scientists to use federal funds to study hESCs derived after August 9, 2001. So far, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have approved a total of 43 lines, more than double the lines available for distribution during the Bush administration.

The new bill builds on the NIH guidelines introduced last summer for approving hESC lines for federal fudning, and requires that the NIH review and update the guidelines at least every three years, as well as submit a biennial report to Congress on the research.

“Congress must still enact legislation so that both scientists and individuals who stand to benefit from the promise of this research will have some stability backing their quest for life-changing cures,” DeGette said in a statement.…….read the statement here………….

Read more: Stem cell regs to become law? – The Scientist – Magazine of the Life Sciences


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