Stem cell court appeal – the U.S. Justice Department’s move to appeal a court decision made on Monday, upholds embryonic stem cell experiments, New York Daily News reports. The Obama Administration wants to move forward in using funds to continue the scientific studies behind the cure for spinal cord injuries, Parkinson’s disease, and other illnesses that haven’t responded to traditional treatments.
The government is in the process of appealing the Monday court ruling which drastically undercut federal funds for embryonic stem cell research. The Obama administration is concerned with dozens of experiments being put on hold while politics hold back the research.
New York Daily News reports that the White House and scientists the court ruling made Monday was a larger set back than originally thought. The halt to embryonic stem cell research even restricts rules made under President George W. Bush.
Although the court decision has disrupted research, the National Institute of Health informed researchers they’re allowed to continue with stem cell experiments if they’ve received the $131 million budgeted this year.
What is Put on Hold While Appeal is in Process
What is being put on hold while the appeal process is systematically being ironed out? 22 projects worth $54 million will be “will be stopped in their tracks,” said NIH Director Francis Collins. That translates to millions scientists have already spent in experiments unless they’re able to find private funding to keep the embryonic cells alive.
Opponents of Stem Cell Research Praise Court Ruling
Monday’s court ruling earned praise from a group of Christian attorneys from the Alliance Defense Fund. They helped two researchers file a lawsuit against the administration rules.
“The American people should not be forced to pay for experiments – prohibited by federal law – that destroy human life. The court is simply enforcing an existing law passed by Congress that prevents Americans from paying another penny for needless research on human embryos,” senior legal counsel of the group, Steven H. Aden, said.
President Obama’s Stand and Exploring All Avenues in Research
President Barack Obama, who last year ordered an expansion of stem cell research, “put forward stringent ethical guidelines, and he thinks that his policy’s the right one,”Deputy Press Secretary Bill Burton told reporters Tuesday.
U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth made the ruling in Monday’s hearing which halts government spending on stem cell research. The administration is forging ahead “to make sure that we can continue to do this critical lifesaving research,” Burton said.
What is behind the complicated political-science endeavor? By culling embryonic stem cells – the master cells that have an ability to turn into any tissue of the body – it kills an embryo days old. This procedure requires private funding. However, the stem cells can reproduce in lab dishes indefinitely once they’re culled. Government policies approved experiments on the already existent batches of cells through taxpayer dollars. This is where Congress didn’t just overturn those specific policies, but passed legislation twice directly calling for stem cell research through tax funding, the legislation President Bush vetoed.
Democrats Will Try Legislation Again for Stem Cell Research
Democrats, including Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa are going to try the legislation again. Harkin has pledged a hearing on the controversial court ruling when Congress is back in session in September.
While President Bush allowed 21 stem cells to be researched through taxpayer-funding, Obama increased that number to 75. Obama’s expansion on the number of stem cells to be used has its own set of stipulations – such as the original embryo being left over from a fertility treatment and the woman – or couple – who donated it, did it voluntarily and was informed of other options. Donating the embryo to another infertile woman was a choice offered.
U.S. Justice Department and Court Appeal
Stem cell research is a widely controversial, moral, and political issue of our national culture. The court ruling on behalf of the U.S. Justice Department will be one of the most important cases based on our country’s issues as strong division in whether to use human embryonic stem cells is right in helping other humans.
Source: New York Daily News