Obama Lifts Embryonic Stem Cell Ban
US President Barack Obama has overturned George W Bush's decision to ban federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. The move, while very controversial, was a popular one on Capitol Hill yesterday. But, the use of human embryos for research has angered anti abortion activists. Embryonic stem cells, as their name suggests, are derived from embryos. Specifically, embryonic stem cells are derived from embryos that develop from eggs that have been fertilized in vitro (in glass) and then donated for research purposes with informed consent of the donors. They are not derived from eggs fertilized in a woman's body. The cells are then grown in a laboratory using a cell culture technique. However, their use is not universally seen as progressive. But their is no doubt that they have tremendous medical potential and could open up possibilities for curing diseases such as Type I Diabetes or even Alzheimer's Disease. Click here to see a previous Frog Blog Post on the use of stem cells to cure one of the most common forms of blindness. For more information on Stem Cells click here for a fantastic website.