Tuesday, June 10, 2008


The most ironic thing about the current situation is that pro-lifers have just been handed a weapon that has enormous power to win this battle. But that weapon will do no good unless we can get the word out about it. What is it? Knowledge.

Scientists have discovered a way of turning adult cells—specifically, adult skin cells—directly into stem cells, without creating an embryo. Robert Lanza, the chief science officer of the cloning company Advanced Cell Technologies, declared that “It’s a new era for stem cells.” He went on to state: “It’s the holy grail. It’s like turning lead into gold.” He’s referring to a new discovery made by research teams in Japan and Wisconsin.

According to Wired magazine: In an unprecedented feat of biological alchemy, researchers have turned human skin cells into stem cells that hold the same medical promise as controversial embryonic stem cells.Two teams of researchers—one led by Kyoto University’s Shinya Yamanaka, the other by the University of Wisconsin's Junying Yu—used a virus to add four new genes to skin cells. Thus transformed, the reprogrammed cells became capable of changing into nearly any cell type in the human body.

This discovery sent shock waves through the medical community. The new technique of deriving stem cells from adult skin cells was so revolutionary that even some of the biggest supporters of ESCR have changed their minds about it.

Remember Dolly? Dolly was the first cloned sheep. She was produced in 1997 by a team led by the English scientist Ian Wilmut. Professor Wilmut is a big supporter of stem cells and is perfectly willing to kill embryonic children to get them. He wanted his new cloning methods to be used to produce embryos so that their stem cells could be harvested. But in the wake of the new discovery, Professor Wilmut has abandoned cloning—not because he cares about killing embryos but because he recognizes how superior the new advance is. As he told the BBC:
The work which was described from Japan of using a technique to change cells from a patient directly into stem cells without making an embryo has got so much more potential.

But not everyone is willing to embrace the new technology. Some are still hell-bent on killing babies to get at their stem cells . . .

“The Game Isn’t Over” The Boston Globe notes that in spite of the new advance:
Harvard, with stem cell funding in excess of $60 million, intends to maintain full-throttle efforts to clone petri dish human embryos, from which to harvest stem cells. This work has so far not been successful, but Harvard scientists also will press ahead with creation of human stem cells from frozen embryos . . .The view that efforts to secure stem cells from human embryos should stay on course is one expressed well beyond Harvard.“It’s very early days, the game isn’t over,” said Christopher Scott, director of Stanford University’s Program on Stem Cells and Society. “It would be folly to shove other research in the drawer in favor of following this one new direction, however promising.”Said Ronald M. Green, professor of ethics at Dartmouth College: “Not to move forward with research” involving human embryos “would be grossly irresponsible.”

You and I both know that the forces of death will stop at nothing in their quest to destroy unborn life. Even when adult stem cells have proven their value over and over again, anti-life activists have insisted on killing embryos as part of their nightmare research program. Why? Because they don’t want to admit that the unborn are human beings worthy of respect and protection. If they admit that in the stem cell arena, they would have to admit it in others—especially abortion. That’s why they can’t let go of embryo research and why they will do anything it takes to get federal funding for it. And in the end they’ll win . . . unless people like us do something about it.

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