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Momentum of Stem cell research impeded by legal challenges

by Medindia Content Team on February 13, 2006 at 1:56 PM
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Momentum of Stem cell research impeded by legal challenges

California in the year 2005 planned to begin stem cell research in the state with the approval of 61% of voters passing the Proposition 71. But the legal challenges have impeded the initiative.

The officials now say that it would take spring 2007 before the project will be initiated. Zach Hall, president of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, told his board of directors that it would commence the project as soon as possible.

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The lawsuit has prevented the agency from borrowing $3 billion which will be used by the agency for issuing as research grants over the next 10 years.

But the institute is bestowed with $50 million in temporary private funds from philanthropies and wealthy individuals to start training stem cell researchers.
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Zach Hall also suggested another $2 million for collaborating with other scientific organizations, including international meetings and conferences.

So far this project is been fueled by a $3 million state loan and a $5 million philanthropic gift, but that money is set to run out in June.

The professor said that Universities and other Research institutions have to rely on their own funding sources to begin their stem cell research programs.

Robert Birgeneau, an institute board member and chancellor of University of California Berkeley, said his campus could significantly expand research programs if the initial funds were released by the government.

Stem cell research is a controversial topic to discuss because it involves the destruction of many embryos. But it is believed that this research could yield treatments for diseases like Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and insulin-dependent diabetes.

The lawsuit alleges that the managers of the stem cell agency are not state officials and many of them have conflicts of interest.

The judge though declined to throw out the suits, ruled out all the challenges that have blocked the progress of the research as unconstitutional.

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