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Wednesday, June 20, 2007


posted by on June 20 at 11:53 AM

So long expanded funding for human pluripotent stem cell research.

Using the thoughts of George W Bush as a jumping off point for a scientific discussion is like taking firearm safety advice from Dick Cheney.

Still, a handful of points:

The vast majority of embryonic stem cell research has nothing to do with creating new stem cell lines, or destroying embryos.

In vitro fertilization (test tube babies) is terribly inefficient, resulting in more human embryos than could ever be used to make babies. Most of these excess embryos are eventually bleached and sent down a drain. IVF is basically an unregulated industry in the United States.

The embryos used to make stem cell lines are stopped at the blastocyst stage, a pre-implantation stage that forms 3-5 days after fertilzation. These embryos only have about 150 cells and are significantly smaller than the head of a pin. If not placed in a uterus, they will die on their own after about 14 days total waiting in a dish.

No matter how hard scientists have tried, adult stem cells cannot do many things that embryonic stem cells can do. Want human heart cells (to replace those lost after a heart attack), insulin-producing cells (to replace those lost in diabetes), or dopamine-producing neurons (to replace those lost in Parkinsons)? Human embryonic stem cells are the only definitely established source for these cell types.

See, I told you I shouldn’t let Bush provoke me. For something a bit more fun, I present you surfing rats:

Tip of the hat to Tom Robey at Hope for Pandora.

RSS icon Comments


What does George Bush have against America? That's what I wonder.

He and his Christian Fundamentalist base are not stopping the research from happening. Most stem cell research is occurring overseas, in places such as South Korea. All they are doing is: Americans (still) can not do needed research, Americans (still) can not publish papers (since the research is non-existent), Americans (still) can not patent products which arise (since the research is non-existent), and ultimately the American bio-tech industry can not profit (because of the non-existent research).

Oh, the American Capitalism of stem cell research aside, where is his American Compassion for the Americans and humans world-wide who will, bottom line, suffer since the pharmaceuticals which do result from bio-medical research will not be there for them?

How can GW BUSH be so against research which has such a potential? The GOOD vastly outweighs the BAD.

Much like Ronald Reagan suffered from Alzheimer’s as some type of divine retribution for not increasing research into Alzheimer’s when he was president, GW BUSH should hope and pray no such aliments, such as certain cancers, inflict him in his old age.

Posted by Phenics | June 20, 2007 12:35 PM

I think GWB and his Reds are just plain hatin' on our American values, is all.

They should move to IraqIranAfghanistan where they'd fit right in.

Posted by Will in Seattle | June 20, 2007 12:47 PM

If anyone is interested on a commentary on the executive order W issued along with his veto, check out my analysis. It's a little more focused than surfing rats.

Posted by Thomas Robey | June 20, 2007 3:13 PM

What else do you expect from a man who says he represents a "culture of life" yet has no qualms about killing innocent people in a bullshit war?

I long for the day he gets Parkinsons...

Posted by Dianna | June 20, 2007 3:47 PM

I really think that the Dems should make a commercial. Hold up a vial of stem cells (or petri dish or whatever) and say, "These stem cells are an excess product of helping a family have a child. These could be used to cure Parkinson's, help people walk again, or help millions of people, but they can never, ever, ever be used to create new life. Because of George Bush's veto, there is no funding to help the suffering. As such, there is only one choice in what to do with these." Then pour the bleach in, shake it up, and pour it down the drain.

Posted by Gitai | June 20, 2007 7:58 PM

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