by Paul Nowak
LifeNews.com Staff Writer
January 8, 2006
Australia Embryonic Stem Cell Researchers Head to California to Work
Canberra, Australia (LifeNews.com) — Two Australian stem cell researchers are being brought to California to take part in new ventures with a budget of $3 billion. Martin Pera, the former head of embryonic stem cell research at Melbourne’s Monash University and the Australian Stem Cell Centre, and Dianna DeVore formerly the chief operating officer of the ASCC, will be taking part in new projects. Pera has accepted a directorship at the Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine in Los Angeles, and DeVore will be taking part in a separate, classified project in San Diego. California and New Jersey have been the first U.S. states to legalize embryonic stem cell research, which results in the destruction of fertilized human embryos.
Adult Stem Cells Help Woman Suffering From Immune System Cancer
Monmouth, IL (LifeNews.com) – An adult stem cell treatment has been conducted on an Illinois woman suffering from a cancer of her immune system. Carolu Purtle was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma in March 2005, and recently received a transfusion of her own stem cells to stimulate production of new, healthy white and red blood cells to combat the disease. The new technique is an alternative to Purtle receiving multiple blood transfusions, as the chemotherapy that is used to eradicate the cancer also kills healthy blood cells. By receiving her own stem cells after chemotherapy, Purtle’s bone marrow should be able to produce new, healthy blood cells on its own. When asked about embryonic stem cell research, Purtle said, “Research has shown that adult stem cells are just as effective as embryonic stem cells. I don’t feel that we should have babies just to do research. If I had to choose, I’d rather have adult stem cells."
Nurse Who Euthanized Patients Wants to be Kidney Donor
Somerville, NJ (LifeNews.com) – Charles Cullen, the former nurse who pleaded guilty to killing 29 patients at New Jersey and Pennsylvania hospitals has been granted a request to donate a kidney, but only after he has been sentenced. Cullen, who has been in prison for two years and is scheduled to be sentenced in early January, had requested not to attend his sentencing, but would if state authorities would allow the transplant for an acquaintance of his in New York. Cullen is expected to be given a life sentence, instead of the death penalty, as part of a plea bargain that includes identification of all of his victims. A final agreement on the organ donation depends on whether two other New Jersey counties will also charge Cullen for crimes committed during his 16 year career.
European Union Panel: Slovakia Doctors Shouldn’t be Exempted From Abortions
Brussels, Germany (LifeNews.com) — An advisory panel of the European Union has issued an opinion stating that doctors should not be exempted from performing abortions or other activities that may be contrary to their ethical or religious beliefs. The EU Network of Independent Experts on Fundamental Rights issued its statement regarding a proposed treaty between Slovakia and the Holy See. While part of the treat would allow Catholic medical personnel and facilities to avoid being required to perform abortions, embryo experiments, or sterilizations, the Network concluded that such allowances might interfere with the care patients receive. The opinion states that “conscience clauses” allow medical personnel to avoid performing morally objectionable practices "should be regulated in order to ensure that, in circumstances where abortion is legal, no woman shall be deprived from having effective access to the medical service of abortion." The Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, which has analyzed the document, noted that it is only a recommendation and is not a binding policy.
Indiana Pro-Life Lawmaker Proposes Statewide Abortion Ban
Indianapolis, IN (LifeNews.com) — An Indiana state lawmaker has proposed a ban on virtually all abortions there. The legislation would eventually run up against Roe v. Wade and would likely be overturned in the courts if approved, but Rep. Troy Woodruff hopes the measure will at least get a committee hearing so a discussion could be had about how abortion kills children and hurts women involved. House Bill 1096 would change the state’s feticide law to make abortion a Class C felony and those who perform abortions would receive a 2 to 8 year prison term. The only exception would be in cases to prevent the death or severe physical injury to the mother. Woodruff said he is hopeful the Supreme Court will eventually have a pro-life majority to uphold a bill like his. He also says pro-life people in Indiana deserve a say on abortion. "Also the people have never had an opportunity (through their representatives) to vote on the matter," Woodruff told the Associated Press.