Court stops US President Obama stem cell regulations

By on Aug 24, 2010 in United States, World Comments

A US court last Monday temporarily stops US President Obama stem cell regulations expansion. As reported earlier in CNN, Judge Royce C. Lamberth ruling said that all embryonic stem cell research involves destroying embryos, which violates the Dickey-Wicker Amendment included in federal spending bills.

The ruling, which is against the will of US Congress, stops the federal funding of embryonic stem cell research while the lawsuit proceeds through the legal system.

Lamberth, who was nominated to the federal bench in 1987 by then-President Ronald Reagan said that “The Dickey-Wicker Amendment unambiguously prohibits the use of federal funds for all research in which a human embryo is destroyed.”

“It is not limited to prohibit federal funding of only the ‘piece of research’ in which an embryo is destroyed. Thus, if ESC [embryonic stem cell] research is research in which an embryo is destroyed, the guidelines, by funding ESC research, violate the Dickey-Wicker Amendment.” He added.

It can be remembered that in March 2009, US President Barack Obama signed an executive order to revoke a Bush-era policy limiting federal dollars for human stem cell research. This act allowed the National Institutes of Health to conduct and fund studies on embryonic stem cells.

This issue on embryonic stem cells research has been very controversial since it involves destroying the embryo, typically four or five days old, after removing stem cells. These cells are then blank and can become any cell in the body.

Some scientists believe embryonic stem cells could help treat many diseases and disabilities, because of their potential to develop into many different cell types in the body.

Nightlight Christian Adoptions executive director Ron Stoddart, whose group is one of those that filed the lawsuit, said that “we supported adult stem cell research that doesn’t require destroying embryos.” But he added that “we are opposed to the destruction of the embryos to get embryo stem cells.”

Meanwhile, Justice Department spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler said that the US government can make an appeal to reverse the court’s decision.

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