In mid-September, the U.S. Senate debated and passed a spending bill that included an increase in funding for the Department of Health and Human Services. The bill did not include a ban on federal funding for fetal tissue research, a measure the ISSCR opposed in a letter to leaders of the U.S. House and Senate, signed by 64 organizations.
ISSCR treasurer Arnold Kriegstein visited Senate and House leaders and staff on Capitol Hill shortly after the vote to voice appreciation for the Senate effort.
“In meetings with policy makers, I was able to explain why fetal tissue research matters, and why federal funding is necessary to advance science,” said Kriegstein. “Policy makers don’t often get to talk with scientists working in the lab, and bringing that perspective was key for the staff to understand how stem cell research is moving forward,” he said. “In talking about potential clinical applications, they could see how crucial issues of funding and research are to the future of healthcare,” Kriegstein said.
The ISSCR continues to work in support of stem cell research around the world. In the spring, several European members visited the European Parliament’s Committee on Industry, Research, and Energy to advocate for basic research funding. Those interested in advocating for stem cell science are encouraged to contact Eric Anthony, the ISSCR policy director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Above: Megan Thompson, Sen. Feinstein staff
Above and Right:
Arnold Kriegstein, MD, PhD, Univ. of Calif., San Francisco
Eric Anthony, ISSCR staff