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Gov't funding for Stem Cells


Here is my round of applause for Pres. Bush :) Way to go!



Specializes in ORTHOPAEDICS-CERTIFIED SINCE 89. Has 30 years experience.

Brandy, I'm not sure what you are saying.

My (perhaps unpopular view) is that good people must protect 'embryonic people' at the most defenseless time of their life.

I do appreciate Bush showing restraint, however I also fear that technology/researchers do not care what he says. The 60 'lines' of cells will only last 2 years approximately. Then???


Its ok, I know that not everyone feels the same way that I do. I guess the difference between us is that I do not consider these cell clusters to be life. They will be thrown away in the end regardless, and i feel that if someone could benefit from them, then they should. Yes, Bush did show restraint, and I think he did the right thing. Its a small step in what I feel like is the right direction.

It really does change things if you feel like it is taking a life. If i

felt that it was, im positive that I would feel differently. And with that in mind, i can definately respect you in your thought that it might lead to more difficult decisions down the road. I am Pro-life personally, meaning that I would never consider abortion as an option in my own life, and I am Pro-choice professionally, meaning that I think it is a decision that Each and every one of us has to decide for themselves. I would never try to push

my view on others one way or another.

As with most decisions in life, there are good points to each side. I personally had a great grandfather would had parkinsons, and i lived with him for a year before he died. That might be one of the reasons that I feel the way I do. However I can see the other side too in that this is a life (not my personal opinion, but many do) and should be sacred. But to think that way, i would have to conclude that discarding the extra embryos is wrong as well, and that is a hard line to draw...

But I can respect your point of view, and in that, i will agree that we must proceed with caution.


I agree with Brandy, and I am Pro-Choice. Consider all the people at a young age getting terrible diseases that might have a cure! Is it so wrong to use stem cells from laboratory grown embryos? It's not like they're taking them from women's uteruses. I applaud President Bush's decision also. I think he gave it a lot of thought-and something else to be considered as well-what about cord cells? They only throw that away anyway-that is a potential source of stem cells. I'm hoping they can eventually make stem cells from synthetic materials and that the body won't reject them-I think that would make everyone happy.:)

Hi. I'm going to stick my neck out on this one. P_RN, I think you may be on track with your assessment. I don't quite understand specific details of stem cell research, but it sounds like a quick fix of sorts to me. Living life and taking the good and the bad I thought was all a part of character building and what life is about. It seems to me that we continue to overly focus on treatment and cure (medical model) and in this case, we want to preserve, enhance, or renew bodies that were not created to last. I believe the devil will get completely in the details in stem cell research and man will increasingly fail to draw the line with ethical and moral issues as bioengineering continues to evolve. Also, if funding continues to grow in this area, does this mean that prevention and health promotion activities will once again fall to the bottom of the priority list?

We finally need to acknowledge that everyone won't get access to the results of stem cell research if it is successful for the supposed intended purposes. Does this mean that while some lives are being prolonged, others get legally euthanized? I was under the impression that the world was over populated with people. Is that not the case? I just don't get a good feeling about stem cell research even though I'm still not clear on all the facts.

Good point, mijourney. I'm a big one for prevention too. I was thinking of Michael J. Fox and his Parkinson's.


Specializes in Research,Peds,Neuro,Psych,. Has 12 years experience.

I agree with Brandy as well. Remember, even though government funding may run out, private funding could still fund this type of research and probably will when the benefits become apparent.

Couples seeking infertility treatment decide all the time (and have done so for years) whether to destroy, donate to other couples, or donate to research "extra" embryos from IVF procedures. What would you rather do-destroy an embryo or use it to save a life? Embryos are not people. They are not fetuses. They are clusters of cells. When I worked in IVF I would estimate that 98% of couples chose to donate the remaining embryos to research. It's a good thing, in my opinion.

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." Aristotle

Not my thought, but one of a gal named Caroline in response to another post. I've heard every argument for and against the decision announced last evening, and if WE ALL used the above rationale to live our everyday lives, we'd have less strife.

Personally, I'm for stem cell research, but I really understand how and why others cannot in GOOD conscience agree with me. I have a perspective that comes from wanting to relieve the suffering that I see (heart disease, diabetes, epilepsy, parkison's...). I'm sure others have equally good justification and are lead by their consciences. Many feel that the same end can be reached by a different means; but I'm not convinced, and the scientist in me needs has yet to see 'these other means.'

Annie ;

canoehead, BSN, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 30 years experience.

Does anyone know why the stem cells from umbilical cords are not collected and used for this research. They are plentiful, and cheap, and noncontroversial. I haven't heard them mentioned in debate though except some people mention in passing that they exist. If we used them couldn't we just drop the topic of embryonic stem cells?

I think I heard they are not quite as viable, although they are harvesting them.

I am all for funding of stem cell research. I do not think that we should create embryos to destroy for any reason. I do think it is okay to use embryos that are going to be destroyed anyway.

I would just like to ask a few questions for some of you that are against stem cell reseach.

Is it okay to create embryos artificially so that couples who can't concieve can have a chance to have a child? If so, then what should be done with the extra embyos and who is to decide? If these embyos are going to be thrown out, is it then okay to use them for research? If not would it be okay if it was your child that could be saved for cured from this research?

If it is not okay to artificially create and purposly destroy an embyo for research purposes, why is it okay to do this for the purpose of having a child of your own, and then destroy or let die the remaining embryos?

Why are we so many people so worried about a few cells when other countries are planning to begin to clone humans? Does this not sound really backwards to anyone, or is it just me?

As for prevention.....How can you prevent someone from getting Parkingsons, Alzheimers and such? How can you prevent you child from having diabetes? For many, it is way too late for prevention, or it was not possible at all.

I am not trying to get into an arguement here. I honestly want to understand how everyone thinks about these issues, because I see it not just as one issue, but as all of these put together. To me, these things are not just black and white, there are huge ethical dilemma that go along with any research.

I have to agree with " JILLR" My 10 year old daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in June of 2000. There is NO family history of Diabetes on either side of her family. With that being said, How could we have prevented this terrible disease from invading my dauther. There are some disease that there is no prevention for, the only hope is to find a cure. I have always been Pro-Life, I myself could never have an abortion. But if the people who do are consenting to allow the research and if these frozen embryo's in the IVF clinics are going to be destroyed anyway, I feel it is best to use these for research to save others lives. I applaud Pres Bush for allowing this research to continue, And hopefully they will find a cure for the diseases that are ravaging our country. I do not want to offend anyone here, especially since I am new here, but I would do anything to prevent the suffering that my little girl goes thru every day of her young life.

Most of the recent studies have shown that significant functional differences exist between stem cells from umbilical cords, adult bone marrow, and embryos. It is thought that embryotic stem cells possess higher proliferation and expansion potential.

From a previous post:

The cells that make up days old embryos embody a world full of potential because they can develop into almost any type of tissue. Stem cells transformed into islet cells could restore a diabetic's pancreas. Stem cells that morph into nerve cells could replace neuronal tissue damaged by strokes, spinal cord injuries, ALS, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. Skin tissue grown from stem cells could provide a ready supply for burn victims. Lab-grown cardiac tissue could shore up damaged arteries and hearts.

If the destiny of embryos at IVF clinics is to be thrown out, and couples are willing to donate them to research instead, it's hard for me to believe that throwing them out is a better ethical decision. And for me, as long as that fertilized egg is not destined to be placed in a uterus, it cannot become life.

In addition, embryonic cells are thought to be superior to the adult variety or stem cells taken from cord blood. But we won't know this for sure, if research on embryonic cells remain off limits.

By banning the research, we uphold the most extreme view of the sanctity of life, but at a price: foreclosing the possibility of doing all we can to improve the lot of the living.

Hi. I want to preface my remarks that if the results of stem cell research and development were successful for the intended purposes, I would benefit. Despite this, it's a proven fact that primary prevention and promotion activities never received the level of social and economic support that treatment and cure did and still does. Primary prevention and promotion activities require real individual sacrifice that this fast food society is not accustomed to and does not seem willing to accept and do. Therefore, we do not know the true and full impact of prevention and promotion because we've never really experienced it as a nation or in the world population. We do have plenty of evidence of the results of the treat and cure model and we know that third party payors including the government have been paying for this model for years. In fact, most of us have only worked under the treat, care, and cure model our entire careers.

Researchers are finding that diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's may be related to underlying environmental, genetic and lifestyle causes. We know that much of this is true for diabetes.

I really believe that we need to place more emphasis on preventing the underlying causes of these diseases instead of continuing to throw all our resources to treat and cure. Prevention is typically alot less expensive in terms of funding then treat and cure. Over the years, we have by and large seen successful results of childhood immunizations even though due to improved recordkeeping we can find incidents of poor outcomes. We can also find poor outcomes in the treat and cure arena. Given this evidence, why stop at childhood immunizations and voluntary and/or mandatory wellness checkups for adults and children in terms of primary prevention and promotion?

Question. If the underlying causes of diseases are not addressed (environmental effects, genetics, lifestyle, etc.) and stem cell use grows exponentially as a result, what makes you think that the cloning of humans won't be reintroduced and strongly considered once everyone realizes the costliness of undergoing stem cell procedures?

Hi. Need to clarify for the record. I've experienced many joys in my career seeing patients successfully treated or even cured. I'm not opposed to treat and cure. I just think that it needs to be balanced with primary prevention and promotion for the sake of the future. I know that many of the supporters of stem cell research only want to see suffering end. I would like to see that also. But, I think that we need to understand and acknowledge that positive results from stem cell use will not lead to paradise on earth for humans as primary prevention and promotion won't. We also need to realize that the potential fallout from stem cell use may be more than we bargained for.

I do agree with your views regarding prevention Mijourney, I just wanted to point out that for many that is not possible and too late. I don't think we should just give up of those who did not benefit from prevention. I don't feel that the use of stem cells is a quick fix, as you put, but another option.


Has 10 years experience.

Well here is my two cents on the whole issue. I have mixed emotions. In a way I am not for sure about the embryos being used for stem-cell/research and how they are exactly being obtained but I do feel if they are going to get thrown away in the end anyway stem-cell research would be a great way to keep them for research and better health for others. I do agree with mijourney about putting more emphasis on preventive health but what about the diseases that cannot be helped people can no help their genetic backgrounds and many people cannot help some of their environmental backgrounds either like helpless children who can't help that their parents smoke or their mothers drink while they were in their mother's womb and now they are paying the price of it with their own life's. I feel that some things can not be helped and if researchers feel stem-cell research is the way to go then I feel it is good. Obviously President Bush thought long and hard about this and he is known to be strongly opposed to abortions. I feel if a man like president bush with his beliefs think it is okay then I feel better with the issue on stem-cells myself.

Hi. I appreciate and welcome the responses to my posts. Again, I'm not opposed to treat and cure methods. What I'm opposed to is adults in particular like me looking for what seems an easy way out of our suffering. Or worse, people who will say, well if I abuse my body, I can get stem cell repairs to make me brand new or keep me from getting worse. There's no incentive to prevent anything. Take osteoarthritis and type 2 diabetes for instance. We know that by and large most sufferers acquire these conditions as a result of some genetic link in their system as well as lifestyle. Most health care professionals know how to prevent type 2 diabetes and even osteoarthritis for the most part, but how much time do nurses, physicians, and therapists spend trying to teach proper prevention and promotion techniques on the basis of someone's family hx or lifestyle? I will tell you that I don't believe my doctor knows how to help prevent anything because for him, prevention was given very little attention in medical school. The same is true for nurses and therapists.

I do agree that young children have no control over their environment and therefore may warrant special consideration when it comes to stem cell use. The problem is is that most of them will continue being around mothers and fathers who smoke, use drugs, and drink. Or they will leave in areas infested by the wastes of businesses. How will stem cell implantation fair under those conditions?

I do have what I believe is an interesting question for you all. What if stem cell research was heavily directed toward those who were diagnosed as mentally ill and on medication for their mental illness? Would the outcome from stem cell use in mentally ill people result in a permanent and significant reduction in the homeless population, LTC population, or even the prison population? Would it reduce domestic crime?

My major concern is that if we find that people continue to physically and/or mentally deteriorate despite stem cell implantation due to uncontrolled environmental, lifestyle, or certain genetic effects, what's next? Cloning?

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