Britain Will Double Taxpayer Spending on Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 4, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Britain Will Double Taxpayer Spending on Embryonic Stem Cell Research Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 4, 2005

London, England ( — The British government has decided to double the amount of money it’s spending on embryonic stem cell research, even though it has never cured a patient or resulted in any treatments. Pro-life groups say they money should instead be spending on research involving adult stem cells, which have yielded dozens of cures.

England is moving up its spending from $50 million pounds annually to $100 million in the next two years.

British Chancellor Gordon Brown said the funds are necessary to help keep his country at the top of the international list of nations engaging in the controversial research. England has also authorized human cloning for research in addition to using the cells which are only obtained by destroying human life.

Speaking at the Advancing Enterprise Conference, Brown said Britain should be the world’s number one center for genetic and stem cell research.

"I can today announce that we are taking forward a new public-private partnership to invest in pre-commercial aspects of stem cell research and coordinate future research," he said.

The funding will be largely made to the UK Stem Cell Foundation, a nonprofit group set up by scientists and leading business figures.

Other grants will be directed to British health centers to set up and support Britain’s stem cell bank.

John Pattison, former R&D director at the department of health, who headed the U.K. Stem Cell Initiative, applauded the move, saying Britain needed 350 to 500 million dollars to stay near the top internationally.

Countries like South Korea, China and Singapore are vying for the status of the leading country engaged in the unproven research.