September 28, 2020

The Niche

Knoepfler lab stem cell blog

ES cell lawsuit

3 min read

In Lewis Carroll’s masterpiece, Alice in Wonderland, there is a wonderful passage that came to mind as I read the latest response from the self-proclaimed ‘adult stem cell researchers’ suing the government to stop federally-funded ES cell research: “I don’t know what you mean by ‘glory,’ ” Alice said. Humpty Dumpty smiled contemptuously. “Of course you don’t—till I tell you. I meant ‘there’s a nice knock-down argument for you!’ ” “But ‘glory’ doesn’t mean ‘a nice knock-down argument’,” Alice objected. “When I use a word,” Humpty …Read More

6 min read

Here an anonymous stem cell scientist frankly answers questions about the field in an interview with me. Of course I have to ask you about the recent U.S. court ruling essentially declaring all federal funding of human ES cell work illegal. What’s your take on this? ANSWER: The ruling has so many flaws in it. It is purely political and the judge was crass. The legal wangling is nauseating. And the impact? ANSWER: For the moment, it is disastrous. Many are not getting the …Read More

2 min read

The Obama administration has announced it will “quickly” appeal the ES cell decision, but I’m not hearing anything about a stay on the judge’s order in the meantime or anything like that. It’s quite the opposite. The NIH, in the form of Director Francis Collins, has finally spoken about the federal judge’s ruling that apparently banned federal funding for human ES cell research. Dr. Collins’ statement brings some clarity, but would seem to indicate the most grim interpretation of yesterday’s ruling are turning out to …Read More