President Obama signs executive order removing barriers to scientific research with stem cells
The order would not fund the creation of new stem cell lines, but would allow federally funded scientists to conduct research on existing embryonic stem cells that under the Bush administration were off limits. Obama said the full promise of such research "remains unknown" but that it should be explored because of the potential for scientists to find better treatments for ailments ranging from diabetes to Parkinson's disease to cancer.
"That potential will not reveal itself on its own. Medical miracles do not happen simply by accident. They result from painstaking and costly research," Obama said. He warned of the risks of falling behind other countries in scientific research by keeping in place government restrictions on funding. Obama plans to use the executive order and accompanying memo to signal his commitment to shift government's priorities. But he said Monday that the government will not open the door for human cloning, calling such action "dangerous" and "profoundly wrong."
The proposed changes do not fund creation of new lines, nor specify which existing lines can be used. They mean that scientists, who until now relied on private donations to work with these newer stem cell lines, can apply for government money for the research, just like they do for studies of gene therapy or other treatment approaches.
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Fact Sheet On Presidental Executive Order; Removing Barriers To Responsible Scientific Research Involving Human Stem Cells
Participants and Attendees at President Barack Obama’s
Signing of Stem Cell Executive Order and Scientific Integrity Presidential Memorandum
Fact Sheet On Presidential Memorandum On Scientific Integrity