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New Guidelines for Stem Cell Research

  • Published: 2009-01-11 : Author: Apurva
  • Synopsis: The stem cell controversy has ruffled the Congress State Legislatures President Bush and the whole of the United Nations.

Main Document

The stem cell controversy has ruffled the Congress, State Legislatures, President Bush, and the whole of United Nations. It has resulted in the proposal of new guidelines for stem cell research by the National Academy of Sciences, which is a non-profit group and an advisory to the government.

The stem cell controversy has ruffled the Congress, State Legislatures, President Bush, and the whole of United Nations.

It has resulted in the proposal of new guidelines for stem cell research by the National Academy of Sciences, which is a non-profit group and an adviser to the government.

The guidelines demand the formation of new oversight committees at all institutions carrying out such research. These committees would comprise of researchers, law and ethics experts, and general public members.

The guidelines talk about standards for storage and distribution of cells, but do not impose a ban. There are many religious groups against the use of human embryos for research purposes. The guidelines limit the use of embryos up to the first 14 days of their growth, that is, before the cells start to differentiate into body parts.


The supposed Embryonic Stem Cell Research Oversight Committees (ESCROs) would supervise the early embryo donations for research purpose. The guidelines establish the following parameters:

Donors will have to provide their consent and be clear in their minds that their identities would be known and they would not get any financial benefits obtained from generating stem cells.

Donors should never be lured by money in order to donate embryos.

Researchers should not force fertility clinics to develop more number of embryos than that required for reproductive treatments.

Considering the Chimeras Too

The federal government has restricted stem cell research that utilizes federal funds for cell lines developed before 2001. The guidelines of ESCRO would regulate those cell lines as well as others developed throughout the country by utilizing private or state funds.

The guidelines also take in hand chimeras. They are animals that have been infused with human cells for research. The researchers have to get the approval of ESCRO for creating chimeras, as per the guidelines. Besides this, it restricts the infusion of animal embryonic stem cells into a human embryo and vice versa.

The guidelines allow the scientists to create Chimeras ONLY when there is no other research method available. The introduction of human cells into brains of an animal would be allowed only after providing a concrete scientific justification. For example, creating mice by the infusion of human bone marrow might be allowed because it is to study blood diseases, and is important before clinical trials on humans can be done.

Overall, the ESCRO guidelines are a sort of "compromise", after identifying the need for going beyond the usual and, at the same time, warning against the danger of going too much against the laws of nature.

Will these guidelines douse the controversial fire on stem cell research? Well, only time will tell!

Reference: The stem cell controversy has led to several new guidelines to ensure standards are maintained during stem cell research and public sentiments are not hurt! This is very important in the wake of new developments in cord blood research and to avoid controversies related to cord blood donors. For more details about the benefits of using a cords blood bank, process of cord blood storage and all the other information you need to know about cord blood stem cells, Visit

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