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Stem Cell Legislation and the Related Legal Issues - Research Paper Example

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Stem Cell Research Legislation and the Related Legal Issues Legislation to Stem cell research generally refers to the laws, rules, and policies governing the sources, research procedures, and the application of the stem cell research in the treatment of stem cells in human beings…
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Stem Cell Research Legislation and the Related Legal Issues
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Download file to see previous pages Sources of embryonic stem cells include existing unused in vitro fertilized embryos, stem cell lines, cloned embryos, and aborted or miscarried embryos (National Conference of State Legislatures, 2008). The research on these sources falls under state laws individually or universally. The state may restrict the use on some sources or permit specific activities on such sources. Additionally, the state may limit the use of state funds on stem cell research. Although any research relies on the patient’s consent, many states restrict research on aborted foetuses or embryos. Nevertheless, no state has enacted any legislation to forbid stem cell research (National Conference of State Legislatures, 2008). The History of Stem Cell Research Legislation in The United States The discovery of the multiplication of cells in the mid 1800's, catapulted the embryonic beginning of the history of stem cell research. Additionally, the discovery of the first real stem cell in the 1900s was a great milestone to the history of stem cell research that included work with human and animal stem cells. Legal issues relating to stem cell research legislation emanated in 1973 when the US Supreme Court legalized abortion (Ther, 2002). This lead to the decision by the federal government to restrict any funding by placing a moratorium to embryo research with a presumption that such research would promote more abortions. Personally, I tend to believe in this analogy especially where the research was to take place in an unregulated institution. However, in 1988 a National Institute of Health (NIH) panel voted in favour of the US government funding to stem cell research (Popular Issues Home, 2012). Moreover, in 1990, the US Congress voted against the moratorium on government funding of embryonic stem cell research but President George Bush vetoed their decision. Later on President Clinton lifted the moratorium on government funding of embryonic stem cell. This led to a public outcry that forced him to reverse his decision. Indeed, the Congress banned federal funding to stem cell research in 1995 with a further extension to the moratorium by the DHHS Secretary Sullivan in 1998 (Popular Issues Home, 2012). More so, in 2000, President Bill Clinton allowed restricted funding on stem cells derived from aborted human foetuses only. Most significantly, the issue of stem cell research took a political dimension on the first year of President George W. Bush's term in 2001. Indeed, on August 9, 2001, Bush announced his decision to allow Federal funding on existing human embryonic stem cell lines prior to August 9, 2001 and equally enhanced the ban on federal spending on deriving new embryonic stem cells from fertilized embryos. Actually, the US stuck to this decision of the refusal to fund embryo research for 30 years. Even though the overall ban on embryo research remains in the US, Bush's decision on allowing limited federal funds for stem cell research was very fundamental. Moreover, in 2004, Congress sought Bush’s review on his policy on embryonic stem cell research funding that he refused to revert (Popular Issues Home, 2012). Comparison to Comparable Statutes in the Rest of the World Stem Cell Research Legislation in the US is comparable to other statutes in the world. Indeed, the legislation that governs stem cell research varies considerably from state to state and from country to country depending on cultural, religious, and ethical values. For ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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