Stem Cells, The White House And Rankled Researchers

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Monday, January 22, 2007

Harvard University researchers Kevin Eggan, Chad Cowan and Douglas A. Melton wrote members of Congress earlier this month to complain that the White House domestic policy office's report "Advancing Stem Cell Science Without Destroying Human Life" was a "misuse and misunderstanding" of their research. Excerpts:

"We are surprised to see our work on reprogramming adult stem cells used to support arguments that research involving human embryonic stem cells is unnecessary. On the contrary, we assert that human embryonic stem cells hold great promise to find new treatments and cures for diseases. . . .

"The work that we performed and that was cited in the White House policy report is precisely the type of research that is currently being harmed by the President's arbitrary limitation on federal funding for human embryonic stem cell research. . . .

"We feel that the President's restrictive policy has directly impeded research that provides a hope for cures for millions of Americans. . . .

"The White House has clearly gotten it wrong. The overwhelming consensus in the scientific and medical community is that embryonic stem cell research holds the greatest potential to cure diseases and end the suffering of millions."

© 2007 The Washington Post Company

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