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AAAS Supports Policy Push for Broader Access
to New Human Embryonic Stem Cell Lines
AAAS, the world's largest general science society, today expressed support for U.S. policymakers who are calling upon U.S. President George Bush to reevaluate policies that limit access to new human embryonic stem cell lines.
"It is only through federal support of research on all types of stem cells that we may be able to realize promising new treatments or cures," AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner, executive publisher of the journal, Science, wrote in a letter to U.S. Representatives Michael Castle and Diana DeGette.
Castle (R-DE), DeGette (D-CO) and some 200 other lawmakers are expected to call for a reassessment and expansion of U.S. stem cell policy at a press conference set for 10:00 a.m. ET Wednesday, 28 April, in 2362A Rayburn Office Building, Washington, DC.
"Federal funding for all types of stem cell research is essential so that the scientific community can better understand the potential value and limitations of each type and so that all avenues of research can be pursued in search of cures for serious diseases," Leshner wrote.
Leshner's 28 April letter re-affirms an earlier statement issued by AAAS in response to the Administration's policy on federal funding of embryonic stem cell research. That statement, dated 17 August 2001, urged the President to periodically reassess stem cell policy "so that changes may be made in order to realize to the fullest extent possible the benefits of this promising field of research." (See www.aaas.org/spp/cstc/docs/01- 08-17_stemstmt.htm.)
Noting that embryonic stem cell research may have the potential to offer advanced medical solutions for serious diseases that cause terrible suffering, the 2001 AAAS statement further recommended that the Bush Administration publicly disclose the sources of the existing embryonic stem cell lines. As outlined in another AAAS statement issued 14 February 2002: "AAAS supports stem cell research, including the use of nuclear transplantation techniques (also known as research or therapeutic cloning)," but "endorses a legally enforceable ban on efforts to implant a human cloned embryo for the purpose of reproduction."
28 April 2004
Copyright © 2013. American Association for the
Advancement of Science.
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