>Today the Texas House State Affairs Committee met in Houston to hear invited testimony on their interim charge on following stem cell research. The proponents of embryonic stem cell research are still claiming that “only” 9 or so diseases are being treated with adult stem cells and that we’ve had 40 years on adult stem cell research and only 8 with the embryonic.
In fact, the number of diseases treated is greater than the number being cured. We heard from a representative from the Texas State Cord Blood Bank who told us that over 500 people have received cord blood stem cell transplants. (My grand daughter was one of the early ones. Her congenital neutropenia was treated if not cured, at Cooks’ Children’s Hospital in Fort Worth in December, 2001. And, of course, she’s superduper.)
I was kind enough not to read my 2700 word written testimony to the Representatives present. But, then,during the question and answer period, I got the idea that none of them had read it prior to the meeting. I will recite every darn word out loud, next time. Plus the three-inch thick set of references to go with them.
One Rep was really hung up on cloning, which he thinks is just fine. I heard “there’s no sperm!” lots of times, today. Of course there was sperm: the donor’s daddy.
I did finally open my notebook and read the definition of somatic cell nuclear transplant or cloning to the Reps.
We had some very good and some not so good testimony, today.
I am always impressed when the proponents of what I consider an unethical act seem to try to be as honest as possible. I was glad to hear that the blastocyst is an embryo from a couple of them. We heard a lot about ‘losing’ scientists and little about the ones who are moving in. But, I was saddened by the lack of response to the idea of cord blood banking and the wonders of the new discoveries on adult stem cells. The last speaker, a PhD molecular biologist, did the best job on wrapping up what a waste embryonic stem cell research is, and where adult stem cell research is going. He was very clear about the fact that we have pleuripotent stem cells created from adult stem cells.
No one seems to care as much as I do about the patents and licensing fees from our Texas taxpayers to the University of Wisconsin.
Oh, well, “An embryo is a human being, Representative.”