Stem Cell Ruling Leaves Some Disability Research In Limbo
A court action earlier this week halting federal funding for research involving human embryonic stem cells is leaving some research into developmental disabilities up in the air.
On Monday, a U.S. District Court judge issued a preliminary injunction saying that federal funding of stem cell research violates a 1996 law barring federal dollars from being used for research where an embryo is destroyed. Federal officials are already appealing the decision, but in the meantime, it could put existing research projects in jeopardy.
For example, researchers are currently using stem cells to learn more about Down syndrome, but scientists at Children’s Hospital Boston say their $1 million federal research grant could be in question as a result of the ruling, reports CBS News. To read more click here.
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What’s more, while there are hopes that cells taken from a person’s skin, for example, could be “reprogrammed” to behave like an embryonic stem cell, recent findings in individuals with fragile X indicate that reprogrammed cells are not picking up all traits of embryonic ones. That means that true stem cells are likely needed to better understand the condition, reports The Wall Street Journal. To read more click here.