Thursday, August 24, 2006

New Stem Cell Technique May Not Be Good Enough for Bush

The main objection that critics have had regarding the pursuit of embyonic stem-cell research is that the 150 celled embryo - called a blastocyst - has been destoyed in the past, thereby destroying what is potential life, at least in the eyes of the Bush Administration and "right-to-life" (what a ridiculous phrase) critics.

So one would think that the new technique for harvesting stem-cells - in which a single cell is taken from a a two day old, eight celled blastomere - would be sufficient to silence the critics. This technique has been in use for a decade in testing in vitro embryos for potential birth defects, to no ill health for the embryos implanted in the womb, carried to term and since successfully born and raised.

Gues what? That ain't enough:

[...]Emily Lawrimore, a White House spokeswoman, suggested that the new procedure would not satisfy the objections of Mr. Bush, who vetoed legislation in July that would have expanded federally financed embryonic stem cell research. Though Ms. Lawrimore called it encouraging that scientists were moving away from destroying embryos, she said: "Any use of human embryos for research purposes raises serious ethical questions. This technique does not resolve those concerns."

How is embryonic stem-cell research supposed to happen, if human embryos are not used? By waving a magic wand?

Scientists acknowledge that more research needs to be done to make sure this is a viable method of creating new stem-cell lines. But this is the best - and least destructive - method of furthering this much needed research. Bush and his cabal really need to embrace this technique, less they be seen as obstructionist Neanderthals.

Oh, wait...

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