Pro-Life Group Hosts Briefing on Successes of Adult Stem Cell Research

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 13, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

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by Steven Ertelt Editor
March 13
, 2008

Washington, DC ( — A top Washington-based pro-life group hosted a bipartisan briefing on Capitol Hill on Thursday to tout the latest successes of adult stem cell research. The Family Research Council’s event featured several patients and the doctor who treated them with adult stem cells.

With Congress considering funding appropriations for the Dept. of Health and Human Services, which includes The National Institutes of Health, the group said the briefing was needed to alert members of Congress to the latest adult stem cells news.

The pro-life group says Congress should give priority and increased resources to funding research that is actually helping patients now as opposed to embryonic stem cell research. That’s the science that involves the destruction of human life.

Reps. Randy Forbes, a Virginia Republican, and Daniel Lipinski, an Illinois Democrat, hosted the event for FRC and it included renowned scientist Dr. Richard Burt — of Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.

Burt recently published a seminal article in the February 2008 Journal of the American Medical Association on the success of adult stem cell research.

He examined hundreds of studies that were conducted between January 1997 and December 2007, and found that therapies using blood- or bone-marrow derived stem cells can successfully and safely treat heart disease and autoimmune disorders.

In 2007, Dr. Burt, along with a team of Brazilian doctors, led a groundbreaking study that used adult stem cells to reverse Type 1 (juvenile) diabetes in patients.

Tony Perkins, FRC’s president said he appreciated the congressmen hosting the event and praised them for pushing the Patients First Act (H.R. 2807), which would prioritize funding stem cell research.

"Embryonic stem cells have yet to treat a single human patient and this is unlikely to change in the future. Adult stem cells are already providing therapeutic benefit to human patients for 73 diseases and conditions," the group says.

During the briefing, stem cell recipients Barry Goudy (treated for Multiple Sclerosis), Amy Daniels (treated for Systemic Sclerosis), and Jill Rosen (treated for Lupus) spoke about their firsthand success.