The Science, Ethics and Politics of Stem Cell Research

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Just as the world learns that researchers in South Korea have successfully extracted stem cells from cloned embryos, Congress is considering a bill to expand the use of federal funds to harvest stem cells from new embryos. Scientists believe that this "therapeutic cloning- will be invaluable in finding cures and prevention against several diseases and disorders. As with abortion, this emotionally charged issue involves basic disagreements over the definition of life. While pro-life champion conservative Orrin Hatch favors the new legislation, President Bush vows he will use the first veto of his office to turn back the bill. Guest host Diana Nyad speaks hears more about the science, ethics and politics of stem cell research from advocates and opponents, including geneticists, doctors, and a member of the President-s Council on Bioethics. (An extended version of this discussion aired earlier today on To the Point.)
  • Reporter's Notebook: Finding a Cure for Spinal Cord Injuries
    Last fall California voters approved Prop 71, which created the $3 billion California Institute for Regenerative Medicine. As Congress debates expanding the use of federal funds to harvest stem cells, a team of scientists at the University of California Irvine have used human embryonic stem cells to help a rat with a spinal cord injury. Maura Hofstadter is the scientific liaison for the UCI's Reeve-Irvine Research Center.

Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2005 (HR 810)

President Bush on embryo adoption and stem cell research

Senator Hatch on stem cell research

Karolinska Institute on stem cell therapy for spinal cord injury

UCI on Hans Keirstead's research into stem cell treatment, spinal cord injury

Proposition 71 (2004)

California Institute for Regenerative Medicine



Warren Olney


Frances Anderton