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Federal Funding for Research Involving Embryonic Stem Cells: A Joint Statement from the PDF and NPF

Joint Statement by the National Parkinson Foundation and Parkinsonís Disease Foundation on Federal Funding for Research Involving Embryonic Stem Cells

New York City and Miami (FL), July 27, 2001

It is the position of the National Parkinson Foundation and the Parkinsonís Disease Foundation that current NIH guidelines governing federal funding for research involving embryonic stem cellsódeveloped during the last Administration but suspended since by President Bushóare consistent with law, with scientific opportunity, and with the needs and hopes of millions who look to this research as leading to a potential cure for their diseases. The guidelines should be reinstated.

Under the present guidelines, federal funds can be used to investigate embryonic stem cells, under controls that include requirements for informed consent on the part of the donor. The rules limit federal support to research on cells derived from embryos that are produced in the normal course of in vitro fertilization and that are in excess of the needs of the infertile couple. These excess embryos would otherwise be discarded.

The guidelines would not permit federal support for research involving the deliberate creation of embryos for research purposes, such as has recently been reported from a laboratory in Virginia.

Research involving embryonic stem cells is an extremely promising avenue in the drive to eliminate disease conditions of many kinds, including diabetes, Alzheimerís disease and Parkinsonís disease. President Bush should move immediately to affirm the current federal guidelines and by so doing, to earn the respect and thanks of the tens of millions who suffer with diseases that could potentially be eased or ended by this kind of research.

The National Parkinson Foundation, based in Miami, FL, and the Parkinsonís Disease Foundation, based in New York City, are two of the leading organizations representing the Parkinsonís community in the United States.

Source Date: Aug 09 2001