Dr. Prentice Discusses Stem Cell Research (7/04)

July 12, 2004 The stem cell issue is a crucial “sanctity of human life issue.  Human embryonic stem cell, (obtained at the cost of sacrificing an early human being – like you and I once were), have thus far proven to be extremely problematic, not yielding any consistent positive  therapeutic results, but yielding some very negative results (ie, in attempts with Parkinson’s disease patients). On the other hand, adult stem cells, cheap, abundantly available, with no rejection reactions if they come from your own body, have already produced significant positive therapeutic results.  However, driven by pressure from the biotecnical industry, and scientists who hold a utilitarian view of life and want access to America’s pool of frozen embryo’s for experimental purposes, the issue has become incredibly politicized.  Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer, pluripotent stem cells,  progenitor cells are all terms used to disguise the issue both in the media and in bills before legislatures, in order to obtain a vote favorable to the industry, rather than favorable to the embryo.   As physicians who believe in the sanctity of human life, we need to maintain a clear focus on what means what, and who is saying it!   The following is a very informative article by Dr. David Prentice, Professor of Life Sciences at Indiana State University, Adjunct Professor of Medical and Molecular Genetics or Indiana University School of Medicine, and a Founding Member of Do No Harm: The Coalition of Americans for Research Ethics: There are many sources of stem cells, but the two most often discussed are embryonic stem cells and adult stem cells. Embryonic stem cells come from...