Pennsylvanians for Human Life

Stem Cell Research

Carol Franz
Carol Franz
MP3 Audio: Cancer Survivor Carol Franz discusses Adult Stem Cell Cure for Cancer

Doctors Say Adult Stem Cell Research Cures HIV-Positive Man

57% Oppose Taxpayer Funding of Embryonic Stem Cell Research

The Importance of the court decision blocking federal funding of human embryonic stem cell research

On March 9, 2009, President Barack Obama eliminated the executive-branch restriction on spending federal tax dollars to support research that involves the destruction of human embryos. His announcement arrives at a moment when less morally problematic alternatives, such as reprogrammed adult cells, have begun to show serious potential. Prior to Obama's policy, President George W. Bush funded adult stem cell research (Executive Order 13435). President Obama then revoked the funding for adult stem cell research, and began funding embryo-destroying research..
Stem Cells in Teeth Beneficial to New Therapies
Aside from being the most convenient stem cells to access, dental stem cells have significant medical benefits in the development of new medical therapies. Using one's own stem cells for medical treatment means a much lower risk of rejection by the body and decreases the need for powerful drugs that weaken the immune system, both of which are negative but typical realities that come into play when tissues or cells from a donor are used to treat patients. Further, the stem cells from teeth have been observed in research studies to be among the most powerful stem cells in the human body. Stem cells from teeth replicate at a faster rate and for a longer period of time than do stem cells harvested from other tissues of the body." Visit: Using Stem Cells in Teeth for Future Use in Developing Medical Treatments:
Adult Stem Cells are Used to Cure or Treat Many Diseases

In July, 2005 Michael Fox and others testified before Congress about the "need" for embryonic stem cell research. Then the most successful work to treat and cure Parkinson’s disease and a whole host of other diseases was being done with ADULT STEM CELLS, and STEM CELLS OBTAINED from UMBILICAL CORD BLOOD.
Then as now, there is NO NEED to kill new human life in order to cure disease. Since 2005 new ways to obtain adult stem cells have been developed including cells taken from human fat and teeth. More treatments using adult stem cells have been developed.
Pro-lifers, fiscal conservatives and those who want to put patient's interests first have good reason to oppose embryonic stem cell research. No cures or treatments have been found using embryonic stem cells. It would be far better to put tax dollars to work using adult stem cells as these have resulted in proven cures and treatments. When we talk about adult stem cell research, we are talking about results not just "promise". Adult and adult-type stem cell research does not kill new human life. It has also resulted in numerous treatments and successful human therapies for the following diseases:
Brain Cancer
Ovarian Cancer
Merkel Cell Cancer
Testicular Cancer
Acute Lymphobolastic Leukemia
Acute Myelogenous Leukemia
Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia
Multiple Myeloma
Breast cancer
Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
Renal Cell Carcinoma
Various Solid Tumors
Multiple Sclerosis
Crohn’s Disease
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Juvenile Arthritis
Systemic Lupus
Systemic Vasculitis
Soft Tissue Sarcoma
X-Linked Hyperimmunoglobuline-M Syndrome
Severe Combined Immunodeficiency Syndrome-X1 1
Juvenile Myelomonocytic Leukemia
Sjogren’s Syndrome
Behcet’s Disease
Red Cell Aplasia
Autoimmune Cytopenia
Angioimmunoblastic Lymphadenopathy with Dysproteinemia
Osteogenesis Imperfecta
Sandhoff Disease
Corneal Regeneration
Hemophagocytic Lymphohistiocytosis
Primary Amyloidosis
Limb Gangrene
Surface Wound Healing
Heart Damage
Parkinson’s Disease
Spinal Cord Injury
Hurler’s Syndrome
XLinked Lymphoproliferative syndrome
Sickle Cell Anemia
Sideroblastic Anemia
Waldenstrom’s Macroglobulinemia
Aplastic Anemia
Amegakaryocytic Thrombocyclopenia
Chronic Epstein-Barr Infection
Fanconi’s Anemia
Diamond Blackfan Anemia

Stem Cell Transplantation Helps Diabetics Become Insulin Free
This article found in Stem Cell Research News, discusses positive results with a process called hematopoietic stem cell transplantation or HSCT. HSCT uses the patient’s own blood stem cells and removes and treats them. The stem cells are then returned to the patient by intravenous injection. The article, Stem Cell Transplantation Helps Diabetics Become Insulin Free by Richard Burt begins here: "The majority of patients with Type 1 diabetes who underwent a certain type of stem cell transplantation became insulin free, several for more than three years, with good glycemic control, and also increased C-peptide levels, an indirect measure of beta-cell function, according to a new study." Visit: Stem Cell Research News:
Doctor Jack Willke's Address at the Pennsylvanians for Human Life Prayer Breakfast

Dr. John Willke, internationally known pro-life leader, author and spokesman addressed the twenty-fourth annual Respect Life Prayer Breakfast sponsored by PA for Human Life. "What takes place in the earliest days of human life and how does this relates to embryonic stem cell research?" Dr. Willke asked. "We have learned through modern technology that sperm can get into a woman's ovaries in as little as thirty minutes. If a ripe ovum is present conception can occur." "Several million sperm attempt to fertilize the ovum, but only one will push its head through the shell of the ovum. This event creates an electrical charge around the periphery of the ovum preventing any more sperm from getting in." Willke continued.

Willke continued, "The sperm's penetration is the moment of conception. In 24 hours, sometimes called the process of conception, the genetic material from the mother and father are reconstituted into a single cell. Now we have a complete human body." "When you have a fertilized egg, you have a being which is alive. This being is human, not a rabbit, not celery. This being is sexed, male or female. It is complete. Nothing is added to the single cell you once were except nutrition and oxygen." the doctor emphasized.

"This is not a blueprint, because nothing is added. When you build a house you start with a blueprint, but you add bricks, mortar, wood, etc. At conception we have a complete being, either male or female from the first day. All that is needed is time and nutrition so that this new human being can grow. For the first week of life the new individual floats freely and at about one week implants into his mother's womb and sends a chemical message that there is a passenger here. Don't menstruate. This new passenger dominates her body until delivery, taking the nutrition he needs and he will even choose his own birthdate." said Willke.

Understanding what happens to every human being in the very first days of his or her life is only part of what we need to know about the debate over embryonic stem cell research. Dr. Willke told his audience, "In order to understand the debate over embryonic stem cells, we need to understand where we get embryonic stem cells. You take a brand new human on day five of his life, cut him or her open and take from the inside embryonic stem cells. The only way to get embryonic stem cells is to kill a new human life." He continued, "This is the first reason we oppose embryonic stem cell research. The second reason is they don't work and probably never will. This is due to rejection as foreign tissue. Embryonic stem cells are foreign tissue to the patient. Infection is another reason. The woman who donated the egg may have a disease which can be transmitted. Another reason why embryonic stem cells do not work is that we cannot control the growth of the cells. They produce tumors. One patient who received embryonic stem cells died a year later of a brain tumor. An autopsy showed that the stem cells produced hair and bone cells in his brain."

"Adult stem cells are safer and more efficient. Adult stem cells treat over seventy different conditions. For example, an eighteen year old girl who was paralized went to Portugal for treatment. They took stem cells from the lining of her nose and put them into her spinal cord. She is walking. There was no rejection, no infection and they don't produce tumors." Dr. Willke reported. The January 27, 2007 event drew a crowd of nearly 400 people to St. Mary's Center, Scranton.

From Pro-Life PA by Sue Cirba,Thursday, February 08, 2007

Prayer Breakfast Speakers Page

Adult Stem Cell therapy to tackle HIV

A novel stem cell therapy that arms the immune system with an intrinsic defence against HIV could be a powerful strategy to tackle the disease.

Professor Ben Berkhout speaking at the Society for General Microbiology’s spring meeting in Edinburgh today explains how this new approach could dramatically improve the quality of life and life expectancy for HIV sufferers in whom antiviral drugs are no longer effective.

Click here for complete article
Articles on stem cell research policy from the New Atlantis:

Obama’s False Choice

What the president could stand to learn from his predecessor on science policy.

By Yuval Levin

Almost eight years ago, on the evening of Aug. 9, 2001, a new president addressed the nation about the complex challenge he confronted in deciding whether and how the federal government should support embryonic-stem-cell research. Rather than just announce the decision he had reached, George W. Bush took his national television audience through the process he had followed over the preceding months as he wrestled with that “complex and difficult issue.”

For the continuation of this article visit: National Review
Research into stem cells of adults stirs hopes
Many researchers are coming to believe they can achieve as much using adult stem cells as using controversial human embryonic stem cells.
Click here to read more
Tissue-engineered grafts composed of adult stem cells could 1 day replace synthetic vascular bypass grafts

Using adult stem cells, researchers have created functional blood vessels that could one day replace synthetic grafts often required in various vascular bypass surgeries, according to research presented at the American Heart Association's Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology Annual Conference 2010.
Click here to read more
Windpipe transplant success in UK child
A 10-year-old British boy has become the first child to undergo a windpipe transplant with an organ crafted from his own stem cells.
Click here to read more
Life Issues Institute's Stem Cell web page contains interesting articles including:
A Stem Cell Comparison Chart,
Adult Stem Cell Successes,
Current Stem Cell Treatments,
Current Treatment with with Umbilical Cord Blood,
I'm Pro-Life and Oppose Embryonic Stem Cell Research
and Embryonic Versus Adult Stem Cells? It's Really No Contest.

To read these articles visit:

Excerpts Of President Bush’s Stem Cell Speech 2001

My administration must decide whether to allow federal funds, your tax dollars, to be used for scientific research on stem cells derived from human embryos.
A large number of these embryos already exist. They are the product of a process called in-vitro fertilization which helps so many couples conceive children. When doctors match sperm and egg to create life outside the womb, they usually produce more embryos than are implanted in the mother. Once a couple successfully has children, or if they are unsuccessful, the additional embryos remain frozen in laboratories. Some will not survive during long storage; others are destroyed. A number have been donated to science and used to create privately funded stem cell lines. And a few have been implanted in an adoptive mother, and born, and are today healthy children.
And while scientists admit they are not yet certain, they believe stem cells derived from embryos have unique potential. You should also know that stem cells can be derived from sources other than embryos: from adult cells, from umbilical cords that are discarded after babies are born, from human placentas. And many scientists feel research on these types of stem cells is also promising. Many patients suffering from a range of diseases are already being helped with treatments developed from adult stem cells.
Scientists further believe that rapid progress in this research will come only with federal funds. Federal dollars help attract the best and brightest scientists. They ensure new discoveries are widely shared at the largest number of research facilities, and that the research is directed toward the greatest public good.
Research on embryonic stem cells raises profound ethical questions, because extracting the stem cell destroys the embryo and thus destroys its potential for life. As I thought through this issue I kept returning to two fundamental questions. First, are these frozen embryos human life and therefore something precious to be protected? Second, if they're going to be destroyed anyway, shouldn't they be used for a greater good, for research that has the potential to save and improve other lives?
I've asked those questions and others of scientists, scholars, bioethicists, religious leaders, doctors, researchers, members of Congress, my Cabinet and my friends. On the first issue, are these embryos human life? Well, one researcher told me he believes this five-day-old cluster of cells is not an embryo, not yet an individual, but a pre-embryo. He argued that it has the potential for life, but it is not a life because it cannot develop on its own.
An ethicist dismissed that as a callous attempt at rationalization. "Make no mistake," he told me, "that cluster of cells is the same way you and I, and all the rest of us, started our lives.” In recent weeks, we learned that scientists have created human embryos in test tubes solely to experiment on them. This is deeply troubling and a warning sign that should prompt all of us to think through these issues very carefully.
Embryonic stem cell research is at the leading edge of a series of moral hazards. The initial stem cell researcher was at first reluctant to begin his research, fearing it might be used for human cloning. Scientists have already cloned a sheep. Researchers are telling us the next step could be to clone human beings to create individual designer stem cells, essentially to grow another you, to be available in case you need another heart or lung or liver. I Strongly oppose human cloning, as do most Americans. We recoil at the idea of growing human beings for spare body parts or create life for our own convenience.
I also believe human life is a sacred gift from our creator. I worry about a culture that devalues life, and believe as your president I have an important obligation to foster and encourage respect for life in America and throughout the world. And while we're all hopeful about the potential of this research, no one can be certain that the science will live up to the hope it has generated.
Eight years ago, scientists believed fetal tissue research offered great hope for cures and treatments, yet the progress to date has not lived up to its initial expectations. Embryonic stem cell research offers both great promise and great peril, so I have decided we must proceed with great care. As a result of private research, more than 60 genetically diverse stem cell lines already exist. They were created from embryos that have already been destroyed, and they have the ability to regenerate themselves indefinitely, creating ongoing opportunities for research.
I have concluded that we should allow federal funds to be used for research on these existing stem cell lines, where the life-and-death decision has already been made. Leading scientists tell me research on these 60 lines has great promise that could lead to breakthrough therapies and cures. This allows us to explore the promise and potential of stem cell research without crossing a fundamental moral line by providing taxpayer funding that would sanction or encourage further destruction of human embryos that have at least the potential for life.

For a List of Videos on Stem Cells, click here

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