President Vetoes Embryonic Stem Cell Research Bill – Adult and Umbilical Cord Cells Investigations Still Funded

President Vetoes Embryonic Stem Cell Research Bill – Adult and Umbilical Cord Cells Investigations Still Funded

Bush Wednesday

(Best Syndication) On Wednesday President Bush vetoed the second embryonic stem cell research bill that passed Congress while he has been in office. The only spending bill the President vetoed while the Republicans controlled the congress was the other previous embryonic stem cell research bill.

Many Democrats and some Republicans in congress promised voters they would support the legislation if elected. It is very unlikely the House of Representatives or Senate can muster the votes for an override.

To help squash some of the criticism, the President issued an executive order to encourage scientists to work on ways to derive stem cells without harming the embryo. Whitehouse spokesman Tony Snow said "This is, certainly not an attempt to muzzle science. It is an attempt, I think, to respect people's conscience on such an issue."

American Express

Critics say he should have signed the bill. Some polls have shown that 60 percent of American voters want Federal funding into embryonic stem cell research.

Robert Moffit, Ph.D. Director of Health Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation said that although there have been some advances in umbilical cord blood and adult stem cell research, very little has been accomplished from the embryonic stem cell research in the 20 years prior to George Bush taking office.

“So far, more than 6,000 patients and 66 diseases have been successfully treated with stem cells from cord blood,” Moffit said in 2005. “The clinical advantages of cord blood are promising. A recent study found a survival rate of around 70 percent among high-risk adults treated with cord blood. Results are even more promising with children, with clinical trials showing an 80 percent survival rate for children with immunodeficiency diseases. An article in the New England Journal of Medicine last year showed a 90 percent success rate in treating a disease called Hurler syndrome that affects the brain.”

Earlier this month scientists at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) were able to create stem cells identical to embryonic stem cells by genetically reprogramming adult stem and tissue cells.

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By Tom Madison
Best Syndication News Writer

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