Administration Shelves Many Bush-Era Stem Cell Lines

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by mkrishnan, Mar 16, 2010.

  1. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #1
    NPR covered this, this morning....

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=124616398

    In essence, the issue is that the Administration decided on a uniform policy for vetting ethics related to the original collection of the ESCs, etc. They decided not to grandfather any of the lines approved by Bush. Some of these appear like they might be eligible under the new standards, but the NIH won't approve them until their distributors supply the paperwork. It appears that some of the cell lines may not be eligible at all under the new law.

    The rub is that ESC research is dependent on the line being researched, and essentially becomes useless if the line becomes unavailable, meaning that millions of dollars in federal funding for ESC research in the past years may need to be redone or scrapped if the lines do not become available.

    It seems to be quite a mess... on the one hand, the Obama regulations seem like a good step towards normalizing the use of ESC lines. On the other hand, time and money is potentially going to be wasted, in a time when we don't have money to spare, if some of these popular lines do not become available again.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

    Joined:
    May 18, 2008
    Location:
    Hartford, CT
    #2
    I was really confused by this. Why the hell would they not grandfather in strains that represent over 6 years of research and millions upon millions of dollars.
     
  3. R.Perez macrumors 6502

    R.Perez

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2010
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #3
    Probably a bureaucratic oversight.

    Government is not without its problems, this is one of them.

    That being said, government with all its faults is at least run by people we elect.

    We have no control over corporations, unless we are rich enough to buy into the stock.
     
  4. mkrishnan thread starter Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #4
    If you read the article, it's not an oversight. No cell lines are grandfathered specifically because ethical vetting wasn't conducted (or at least, not appropriately) under the Bush regime, and so all lines are required to be certified under the new process, with the recognition that this may cause some lines to have delayed availability or cease to be available altogether. It wasn't done by mistake, but rather on principle.
     
  5. R.Perez macrumors 6502

    R.Perez

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2010
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #5
    Well again, its a principled stance that lacks merit then, for the same reasons mentioned.
     

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