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SOCIAL: Stem-Cell Research

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posted on Aug, 4 2004 @ 03:44 PM
There is something out there that is the cure for every single person with an illness, and it is found in every single person. In knowing this I wonder to myself, why are people dying young and in pain? Money, money make the world go around. Drug companys would be out of a job. Why is the other superpowers researching stem-cells and the healing powers they hold, and the great United States isnt?

Some would lead you to believe that its because babies have to die to do the research. WRONG
I feel that anything that can help many should be done. More so when it comes to money or lives...
We deserve the right to live and live as long as we can. We deserve an open minded person in office, who ever that maybe.

The truth about stem cell research
Medical science is focusing increased attention on research using human stem cells for treatment of a number of serious disorders, including a whole range of cancers, stroke, and liver disease, to name but a few. Unfortunately, this exciting area of medical study has also been misused by opponents of the Bush Administration who seek to distort the President's record of support of vital stem cell research.

"Stem cell research is still at an early stage, but the hope it offers is amazing: infinitely adaptable human cells to replace damaged or defective tissue and treat a wide variety of diseases. Yet the ethics of medicine are not infinitely adaptable. There is at least one bright line: We do not end some lives for the medical benefit of others. For me, this is a matter of conviction: a belief that life, including early life, is biologically human, genetically distinct and valuable." This statement by President Bush makes clear his position that stem cell research is necessary, but that careful attention must be placed to ensure that all human life is protected.

For several years now, liberal politicians and a sympathetic national media have bombarded the American people with a deceptive message about the Bush Administration's support of stem cell research. Rather than work with Congress and the Administration to further current research, they have chosen to exploit it as a political tool, misleading the public about the facts by consistently omitting a key point.

To hear opponents tell it, the Bush White House and the Congress are doing all they can to end stem cell research and the wonderful promise such study can provide patients. The zenith of this criticism was last week's attack on the Bush Administration by Ronald Reagan, Jr. at the Democratic National Convention. The son of the late president has made no secret of his personal views against the sanctity of life which not only run contrary to the Bush White House, but that of his late father. He and others would have us believe that President Bush is opposed to stem cell research outright and that no such research can be conducted unless it be done using human embryos.

This is misleading. The truth is, as President Bush stated above, human stem cell research does offer hope and must continue. Promising results are already coming from using adult stem cells, and placentas and umbilical cord blood - materials rich in stem cells. The point is we don't have to kill human embryos and end a life in order to conduct this vital research - something Ronald Reagan, Jr. conveniently left out of his speech.

Under the Bush Administration, Federal funding for stem cell research has increased from zero in 2001 to nearly $25 million today. And, in an effort to ensure that the nation's inventory of cord blood is genetically diverse and large enough to help patients secure timely transplants, I am currently a cosponsor of the Cord Blood Stem Cell Act (HR 2852). Specifically, this bill authorizes $15 million in Federal funds during Fiscal Year 2004 and $30 million in Fiscal Year 2005 to subsidize blood centers throughout the nation that agree to collect, prepare, and store the blood units that would then be available for use in transplantation treatments. The goal is to boost and maintain the inventory at 150,000 units, a supply that would enable 90 percent of the population to secure an acceptable stem cell match.

Former President Ronald Reagan made clear his views on life in an essay on the tenth anniversary of Roe vs. Wade: "We cannot diminish the value of one category of human life - the unborn - without diminishing the value of human life." Such is also the belief of President Bush as he pursues responsible and beneficial stem cell research.

Embryonic stem-cell research will save lives
The week-old (or younger) embryos used for stem-cell research are microscopic groups of four to 50 undifferentiated cells. If the roughly 400,000 embryos that are frozen in fertility clinics and likely to be discarded [Harvard Magazine, July-August 2004] have the same human rights as you and I, then protest their use for research and think no further.

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Daniel Mongiardo said Tuesday he supported expanding embryonic stem cell research as a possible way to cure a range of diseases.
"With stem cell research, we're talking about the potential to cure diseases like diabetes, cancer, Parkinson's, and Alzheimer's," Mongiardo, a physician, said in a statement announcing his position. "I lost my mother to cancer when she was 47 years old. No family should ever have to suffer that kind of loss."


Vows to extend health care coverage to more children and low-income adults; supports a Kerry proposal to have the government pay for "catastrophic" health care cases; would open the health care system covering Congress to the public.

Opposes privatizing Social Security; opposes raising the age at which recipients can begin to receive retirement benefits; vows to restore "fiscal responsibility" to the program.

Opposes privatizing Medicare; says Bush prescription drug program "serves drug companies more than seniors"; vows to lower drug costs.

Would allow the "safe" reimportation of prescription drugs from foreign countries.

Would create a "patients' bill of rights" to protect those enrolled in health maintenance organizations.

Vows to create secure, private electronic medical records for all Americans by 2008.

Vows to reverse Bush administration's restrictions on government support of stem cell research.

WASHINGTON If President Bush allows federal funding of research on human embryonic stem cells, half the money might be diverted to the University of Wisconsin and a biotechnology company to pay royalties and licensing fees on patents, witnesses told a Senate Appropriations subcommittee Wednesday.

The Bush administration is considering whether taxpayers should pay for research on human embryonic stem cells. The cells, generally removed from surplus frozen embryos donated from fertility clinics, can transform into any tissue or organ in the human body. Supporters say the cells offer hope for curing diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, diabetes and cancer. Opponents say the research is immoral because the embryos are destroyed in the process.

Congress has conducted numerous hearings on stem cells, but the debate has focused on morality and scientific potential. Wednesday's hearing was the first to look at who will profit if public funding is approved. Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., who led the hearing, said he learned recently that the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF), WiCell Research Institute and Geron Corp. of Menlo Park, Calif., hold a virtual monopoly on stem-cell research.

"We may be involved in a very high-finance issue here," he said.

[edit on 14-10-2004 by SpittinCobra]

posted on Aug, 4 2004 @ 06:54 PM
Terrific post SpittinCobra - The issue of stem cell research has been far too politicized by the Democrats and Republicans. What matters is finding cures and politics should be set aside.

The Libertarian Party official stance on government involvement is to oppose any government restriction or funding of medical or scientific research.

The fact that 40 - 50% of federal funding slated to go to stem cell research will actually go to pay royalties, instead for research itself, is an excellent example of why Libertarian party's stance on this issue is a valid one.

It should also be noted that the issue of embryos may be a moot one. From the USA today article posted by SpittinCobra:

Also at the hearing, Michael West, president of Advanced Cell Technology in Worcester, Mass., said his company, which recently announced that it intends to clone human embryos as sources of stem cells, has developed a new technique that may provide an alternative to creating embryos to use them as sources of stem cells. He said a patent is pending on the technique, called ooplasmic transfer. It would allow scientists to create stem cells directly without first making an embryo.

posted on Aug, 4 2004 @ 11:37 PM
President George W. Bush believes that it is wrong to kill one human being in order to save another. However, his attempt to thread the ethical needle with his decision on the delicate stem-cell issue likely will have some unfortunate unintended consequences.

Embryonic stem-cell research, unlike other forms of stem-cell research, takes the life of its donors. They are only days old but tiny human beings just the same. Stem-cell research done with cells taken from umbilical cords, placentas and adults already has led to important medical breakthroughs that are healing patients. This research is non-controversial because it does no harm to donors.

The Man for Science

Whenever the stem cell subject can squeeze in a moment among Iraq, the economy, jobs, or the 9/11 Commission, Kerry touts that hes the man the man for science.
The bottom line is that Kerry has pledged to increase stem cell research if elected president. (I think people will say anything, actions speak louder)

Charging that the Bush administration has an anti-science attitude, Kerry, a practicing Roman Catholic, has steered clear of berating George Bushs own strong faith that has made the president less than comfortable with stem cell research that involves using human embryos.

Thanks bleys

[edit on 4-8-2004 by SpittinCobra]

posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 06:57 PM
If you vote for Nadar you are voting for Bush.
It is something to see so many people band together to stop something

"The simple fact is that progressives' votes for Nader put Bush in the White House in 2000, making it possible for him to put the brakes on embryonic stem cell research," said Frank L. Cocozzelli, co-executive director of CASCR. "We don't want progressives to repeat that mistake, which may have delayed progress on revolutionary new treatments and cures for a wide range of deadly diseases."

Advocates of embryonic stem cell research are weighing in on the presidential race. Their favorite son, John Kerry, is locked in a tight battle with President Bush, whose policies they oppose.

In order to ensure that independent candidate Ralph Nader siphons as few votes as possible away from Kerry, who backs destroying human embryos for stem cells, the Committee for the Advancement of Stem Cell Research is launching a new campaign ad asking voters to oppose both Bush and Nader.

-- Researchers have discovered a cell-producing region in the human brain that resembles one found in rodent brains -- but with a basic difference that has profound implications for research aimed at repairing damage by growing new cells.

In rodents, a region called the subventricular zone (SVZ), roughly in the middle of the brain, constantly produces cells that migrate to the olfactory bulb, which governs smell. The rodent SVZ produces stem cells, which have the ability to be transformed into many different kinds of cells. Most end up as nerve cells.

posted on Aug, 6 2004 @ 01:37 PM
A few paragraphs from another post of mine.

Quote "... there is some very good research being done in this field.

For example, there IS an ethical answer to the stem cell debate. But you wont hear that from the industry. At McGill University in Montreal there are two research programs that found a solution.

The first discovery is that stem cells can be found in adult skin tissue:

Additional work showed the cells originated in the dermis, a tissue layer just beneath the surface of the skin. The dermis contains many different cell types, Miller says, which might explain why it contains stem cells able to turn into a variety of cells. source

The second research program uses stem cells harvested from umbilical cords (source).

This is the kind of research that can still be found in universities. This is quite different that the research done for private biotechnology ... companies. Their mission is profits and creating markets to achieve them." /Quote

From ETHICS: Biotechnology

Funding for Stem Cell Research should focus on this type of research IMHO.

posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 04:36 PM

Originally posted by SpittinCobra
Embryonic stem-cell research, unlike other forms of stem-cell research, takes the life of its donors. They are only days old but tiny human beings just the same.
[edit on 4-8-2004 by SpittinCobra]

Says you! Are you debating stem cell research or abortion? Either way, you bring up a controversial point that has no clear answer.

Defending Dubya's record on the issue is misleading at best. His policy is an outright attack on women's reproductive rights choices and nothing else. His pandering to the religious right(oxymoron) is a self-rightous axiom of his faith. "Thought" is not a characteristic of the devout true believer.

Science marches onward inexorably, religion takes giant leaps backwards. This is not the time or place to debate the merits/evils of organized religion. Perhaps in another thread. I go now to start a new thread on seperation of church and state issues.

posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 04:38 PM
The point, there are many ways to do it, this way does not need to happen.

posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 09:35 PM
I'm no expert on this subject; if I'm wrong, I'll gladly concede if someone with more knowledge concerning it will correct me.

But it was my understanding that stem-cell research must be done on embryo cells that are less than 4 days old (according to a recent article on the subject in a local newspaper). Mr. Bush and some conservatives have "likened" stem-cell research to abortion, but no abortions are necessary for the research. Egg cells can be fertilized by sperm cells in test tubes, and used for research long before any human characterists develop. This is why Mrs. Reagan, who opposes abortion, supports a lifting of the Bush stem cell research ban.

[edit on 7-8-2004 by Masonic Light]

posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 09:55 PM
"Embryonic stem cell research involves extracting stem cells from developing human embryos less than a week old. Researchers say the young stem cells can be manipulated by scientists to "grow" new tissue that could treat a number of diseases."

The week-old (or younger) embryos used for stem-cell research are microscopic groups of four to 50 undifferentiated cells. If the roughly 400,000 embryos that are frozen in fertility clinics and likely to be discarded [Harvard Magazine, July-August 2004] have the same human rights as you and I, then protest their use for research and think no further.

You have to object, however, to the procedures used in these clinics that create and destroy many embryos for each baby they bring into the world. Perhaps you could articulate a moral distinction between the use of embryos for research and their current disposal.

In the face of extraordinary advances in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of human diseases, devastating illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and diseases of the nervous system, such as Parkinson's Disease and Alzheimer's Disease, continue to deprive people of health, independence, and well-being. Research in human developmental biology has led to the discovery of human stem cells (precursor cells that can give rise to multiple tissue types), including embryonic stem (ES) cells, embryonic germ (EG) cells, fetal stem cells, and adult stem cells. Recently, techniques have been developed for the in vitro culture of stem cells, providing unprecedented opportunities for studying and understanding human embryology. As a result, scientists can now carry out experiments aimed at determining the mechanisms underlying the conversion of a single, undifferentiated cell, the fertilized egg, into the different cells comprising the organs and tissues of the human body. Although it is impossible to predict the outcomes, scientists and the public will gain immense new knowledge in the biology of human development that will likely hold remarkable potential for therapies and cures.

I hope this answers your questions, There are now more ways to get the cells, Most of the embryos would be wasted anyway. Why not use them for good?

posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 10:12 PM

Originally posted by Masonic Light
Egg cells can be fertilized by sperm cells in test tubes, and used for research long before any human characterists develop. This is why Mrs. Reagan, who opposes abortion, supports a lifting of the Bush stem cell research ban.

You are correct on this. The people who equate this with abortion are those who believe that life begins at conception. They don't seem to make a distinction between test tube conception and that between living beings.

Many people have no trouble with other biotechnologies accepting GMOs, in vitro fertilization etc. But when it comes to embryos they cry murder while there are literally thousands of human cell lines used in laboratories every day. And each cell is a wholly formed human cell.

So if it's murder with undifferentiated embryo cells then they must be against any human material being used in research. Hmmm?

I am critical of the biotech industry, but in this case religious zealotry around this question is hiding the real issue IMHO.

As long as we accept the creation of embryos from in vitro fertilization etc. there will be a useful source of these cells for research. And these are not sentient beings.

My opposition to stem cell research is not based in religion it is based on not wanting scientists to mess around with the genetics of humans. Look at what happened when they messed around with the atom.

posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 10:45 PM
Forgive me my obtuse dialectic. I unfairly characterized your original thread as being wholly against stemcell research.

I also must agree somewhat with Gool's last assertion of mistrust of research, however, progress is inevitable and is better watched carefully than banned and thus progressed in secret, albeit maybe slower and without oversight/guidance.


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