October 21, 2020

The Niche

Knoepfler lab stem cell blog

Oklahoma leaders: ES cell research is not OK

Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin
Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin.

The Oklahoma State Legislature is reportedly poised to potentially pass an outright ban of ES cell research.

While in the past similar legislation was vetoed by previous Oklahoma Governor, Democrat Brad Henry, current Republican Governor Mary Fallin is likely to sign the legislation.

The Oklahoman newspaper website today contains a factually incorrect, inflammatory piece by Dr. Dominic Pedulla, equating ES cells to abortion.

Dr. Pedulla refers to “embryonic patients” in talking about the few day old clusters of cells that make up the human blastocysts, left over from IVF procedures, which are used to derive ES cell lines.

He also calls those who are in favor of ES cell research “the medical-industrial complex’s elites”.

I’m sure that many people in Oklahoma support ES cell research. It’s even possible that a majority of Oklahomans support this research that has tremendous potential to treat millions of people and save countless lives.  If the leadership passes this legislation and it becomes law, then folks such as Dr. Pedulla who seek to inflame people’s emotions will have won a victory of their “truths” over the patients and their families in Oklahoma.

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