President Trump’s Coronavirus Treatment Did Not Use Cells From Aborted Babies

National   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Oct 9, 2020   |   11:12AM   |   Washington, DC

Misinformation about President Donald Trump’s coronavirus treatment continues to spread, despite scientific experts’ refutations of the claim that it involved cells from aborted babies.

The Republican president is being accused of hypocrisy for using a COVID-19 treatment that allegedly was tested in a lab that used a cell line derived from the kidney of an aborted baby.

The initial report came from a CBS News reporter who has been called out repeatedly for her blatant pro-abortion bias.

Her report asserted: “The antibody cocktail that President Trump received for his COVID-19 infection and touted on Wednesday evening as a ‘cure’ for the deadly virus was developed using cells derived from aborted fetal tissue, a practice the White House and anti-abortion rights groups oppose.”

According to CBS, the pharmaceutical company Regeneron said the drug was tested with HEK 293T cell line, which were derived from cells from an aborted baby in the Netherlands. Researchers used the cell line to “determine the ‘best’ two antibodies, which now make up the REGN-COV2 cocktail,” a company spokesperson told the news outlet.

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Other “news” web sites are also running biased reports against Trump, claiming the treatment “would have been defeated by his own efforts to thwart the scientific research that made it possible: fetal cell tissue from abortions.”

Buried in the report, however, was an acknowledgment from a Regeneron spokesperson that the cell line is “not considered fetal tissue.”

According to the report:

The lab tests used to evaluate the effectiveness of the antibodies were derived from what the MIT Technology Review pointed out was a standard cell supply known as HEK 293T. It originated as kidney tissue derived from an abortion in the Netherlands in 1973, the same year Roe v. Wade was decided.

Those cells have since been “immortalized” in labs — they keep dividing endlessly, similar to cancerous growth — and have gone through other genetic changes, according to MIT. Over such a length of time, they can become disassociated from their origin.

“It’s how you want to parse it,” a Regeneron spokesperson told MIT. “But the 293T cell lines available today are not considered fetal tissue, and we did not otherwise use fetal tissue.”

Drs. David Prentice and Tara Sander Lee, scientific experts on fetal tissue research, said the medicine that Trump received did not involve the destruction of human life.

“No human embryonic stem cells or human fetal tissue were used to produce the treatments President Trump received – period,” they said Thursday, citing the medical research from the experiment.

Trump has been a champion for life in the White House. Among his many actions, his administration has been ending taxpayer-funded grants to researchers who use aborted baby body parts in their experiments. For doing so, he has faced wide-spread criticism in the mainstream media, but pro-life leaders have praised the president for investing in ethical research.

Prentice and Lee said scientific research that uses ethically-derived materials is proving to be successful. These successes demonstrate that the destruction of unborn babies’ lives is not necessary for scientific advancements.

“These facts reinforce this truth: Ethical treatments are saving lives every day–including the president of the United States,” they said.