Supreme Court Settles Question in Stem Cell Funding

For the past three years, a cloud has hung over the question of US government funding for stem cell research.  Earlier this week, the Supreme Court settled the issue when it denied certiorari in the case of Shirley v. Sebelius, thereby letting stand the appeals court decision striking down a lawsuit that challenged the government’s ability to fund embryonic stem cell research.

The various twists and turns of this case are best handled by legal scholars1, but for those of us supportive of stem cell research, this is welcome news.

With an administration supportive of funding stem cell research in office for four at least more years, researchers will now be able to move forward with all varieties of stem cell research, without the threat that funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) would be ended.

Though I can’t resist the irony that this case was brought by proponents of adult stem cell research, arguing that they would be harmed if embryonic stem cell researchers received funding.  So much for free scientific inquiry
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