Embryonic Stem Cell Research

This Week in Bioethics

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1. The Council of Europe Rejects Surrogacy Earlier this week the Council of Europe rejected a report that called for the regulation of surrogacy, rather than an outright ban on the practice. Intrinsic to the practice of surrogacy is exploitation and coercion—and that’s why we’re grateful that the Council of Europe rejected allowing it in […]

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Human Gene Editing and Eugenics

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A recent essay by Brendan Foht in the Washington Post reveals the backwards logic of scientists who advocate for human gene editing and those who also support the idea that embryos that have been genetically modified must be destroyed. The advent of CRISPR technology allows for the possibility of us forever altering the human genome […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. Adult Stem Cell Treatment Effective Against MS Science Alert reported earlier this week that blood stem cells are proving effective in treating multiple sclerosis patients. This is a very promising development as it once more proves that adult stem cells can be successfully used for healing and treatment—eliminating the need for embryonic stem cells. […]

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2014 Ramsey Award Winner Speaks Out Against Embryonic Stem Cell Research

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A scientist from Harvard, Dr. Doug Melton, has figured out how to use human embryonic stem cells to produce insulin—a potential major breakthrough for those that suffer from diabetes. You can listen to a full NPR broadcast on the discovery here. Dr. Daniel Sulmasy, last year’s winner of CBC’s Ramsey Award, was interviewed by NPR […]

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California Stem Cell Crony Capitalism

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Color me wondering why it took so long: The former head of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine–once in charge of giving away billions of dollars of borrowed taxpayers’ money–has joined a company to which the CIRM gave a big grant. From the (surprising they published it–good for them!) San Francisco Chronicle story: StemCells Inc.’s […]

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SF Chronicle Turns Against CA Stem Cell Agency

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In 2004, California voters passed Proposition 71 under an avalanche of mendacious CURES! CURES! CURES! hype: Children would get out of wheelchairs! Diabetes would be conquered! Mendacity, mendacity, all was mendacity. Ten years later and the spin has spun. Now, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine will need voters to renew its borrow-and-spend mandate. That […]

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Embryonic Stem Cells Cheered Better Adult Ignored

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This has been a pattern for more than a decade in the media. Success after success in adult stem cell research receives scant press attention. In humans! Then, an animal embryonic stem cell success in the same field happens and the media turn summersaults. Latest example, in heart regenerative medicine. From the Business Insider story […]

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Post’s Junk Biology Pushes Human Cloning

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Here we go again! Now that human cloning has been done with adult cells, the pro-cloning crowd pushes it using junk biology–just as they did in years past. First at bat: The Washington Post in an editorial. It acknowledges that embryonic stem cell research is controversial because it destroys embryos. Then, it pretends that human […]

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My Predictions in Bioethics Right Again!

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Can you believe a year has come and gone since I last told you what would happen, before it happened, in bioethics? Maybe it’s my increasing age, but time is passing too fast! So, how did I do? Not as well as in years past, but still an A-. Let’s take a look: The Affordable […]

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We Can’t Let CIRM History be Rewritten

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Proposition 71, which brought the misbegotten California Institute for Regenerative Medicine into being, was sold to voters in a blatantly mendacious campaign based on embryonic stem cell hype of CURES! CURES! CURES! and outright lies about the then state of regenerative medical science. Its administration has been marked by arrogance, conflict of interest, cronyism. And […]

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Follow $ to Non-Embryonic Stem Cell Research!

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Ten years ago, we were in the midst of a heated national debate over embryonic stem cell research (ESCR). Proponents castigated opponents (like me) as “anti-science,” and theocratic for opposing ESCR federal funding based on ethical concerns. When we claimed that alternatives to embryonic stem cells showed great promise, we were derided as Luddites. Embryonic […]

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Human Cloning Obfuscation 8: A Blastocyst, Not an Embryo

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Embryology text books will tell you that when fertilization is completed, an embryo is formed. That, is, a new individual organism exists — which remains the same organism until death. For scientific purposes, the developmental stages of the embryo are given different names. When it is one-celled, it is a zygote. When it is about […]

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Human Cloning Obfuscation 7: No Spin in Science Journals

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The mainstream media — under the influence of spin from “the scientists” — has been playing a game of hide-the-ball about the recent first human cloning success. For example, the LA Times threw a lot of dirt in the air by calling the success merely an “incremental step” toward human cloning. No. It. Was. Human […]

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Human Cloning Obfuscation 5: Monkey Cloned Pregnancy

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Thanks to Brendan P. Foht, over at The Corner, for showing that it was misleading to claim that SCNT human cloning could not lead to a human pregnancy because there have been no successful cloned monkey pregnancies. But there have been cloned monkey pregnancies, with one embryo developing to the fetal stage with a heartbeat! […]

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The Coming Human Cloning Controversies

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I learned about the first successful human cloning last Monday, but couldn’t write about it until Wednesday because of a news embargo. The peer reviewed paper in Cell was rushed to print because is a huge deal. But, much to my surprise, it only made mild news. There were two reasons for that I think. […]

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Human Cloning Obfuscation 4

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The Los Angeles Times has waded in to the junk biology game, assuring us that no embryos are threatened in human cloning — WHEN THE WHOLE POINT OF HUMAN CLONING IS TO CREATE AN EMBRYO! From the editorial, “The Specter of Human Cloning:” The team at OHSU, which disclosed its work in a paper published […]

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Human Cloning Obfuscation 3

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I now see that the old dishonest game is well afoot: Biotech types and media pretending that human cloning isn’t really human cloning unless a baby is born. The cloning breakthrough is instead being spun as skin cells into stem cells! As if it were induced pluripotent stem cells, which really do turn skin into […]

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Cloning Obfuscation 2

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The junk biology is flying in the media’s descriptions of the now accomplished human cloning. This next example comes from the Wall Street Journal’s Gautam Naik. From the ridiculously titled, “Experiment Brings Human Cloning One Step Closer:” Scientists have used cloning technology to transform human skin cells into embryonic stem cells, an experiment that may […]

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