According to the story, the FDA has approved trials to determined if embryonic stem are safe to use in spinal cord patients. While this coincides nicely with the inauguration activities last week, the researchers will be using cell from the line Bush approved for use in 2001.
Of course, the first thing that Diane Sawyer asks after finishing discussing spinal recovery was regarding the use in other diseases “such as juvenile diabetes”. The answer was less than convincing (you can hear for yourself) with an evasion and then a lot of ‘maybe’ and ‘it could’ and ‘possibly’.
I honestly don’t think that the cure for diabetes is in embryonic stem cells. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune attack, so even if a stem cell begins to produce insulin, the body’s haywire autoimmune response will once again begin it’s attack.
I actually posted something similar to this about a year and a half ago after former President Bush vetoed a bill regarding stem cell research. I wrote:
Like him, I support and encourage stem cell research including using embryonic lines as long as it does not involve creating, harming or destroying embryos, That is an ethical line that should not be crossed.
Do I want a cure? Absolutely – no doubt about it. Do I believe that the creation or destruction of human life should be involved in this process? No.
Besides, opponents of the latest stem cell measure insisted that the use of embryonic stem cells was the wrong approach on moral grounds and possibly not even the most promising one scientifically. They cite breakthroughs involving medical research conducted with adult stem cells, umbilical cord blood and amniotic fluid, none of which involve the destruction of a human embryo. [
taken from the article linked above– orginal link was no longer active – new link to a similar page]
What do you think about stem cells? Does your faith impact your view on this issue? Do you think that is where the cure will found?
*This is actually a good link for a comprehensive stem cell summary.