New stem cell bill to be introduced

05/24/2005 | Washington Post, The

Rep. Christopher H. Smith, R-N.J., chairman of the House Pro-Life Caucus, will introduce the Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Act today in an attempt to counter the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act, set for a vote later today. The bill would authorize the use of stem cells from umbilical cords but not from embryos. Opponents of embryonic stem cell research argue "cord blood stem cells have the capacity to change into other cell types," though supporters of the use of embryonic stem cells counter that umbilical stem cells have only been shown to produce more blood cells. The co-director of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute argues cells from umbilical cords and embryos "are not in any way interchangeable."

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