ISSCR Leads International Effort for Uniform Ethical Standards in Stem Cell Research

  • 1 February, 2007

Released: Feb. 1, 2007

Northbrook , IL — Today, marking the most comprehensive global effort to date, the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) released its Guidelines for the Conduct of Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research. TheGuidelines call for special scrutiny of human embryonic stem cell research and specify rigorous ethical standards for scientists working with human embryonic stem cells, seeking to promote responsible, transparent and uniform practices worldwide.

The ISSCR assembled an international task force composed of experts in science and medicine, ethics and law from 14 countries. The task force developed a set of guidelines for human embryonic stem cell research that takes into consideration the international diversity of cultural, political, legal and religious perspectives. The ISSCR Guidelinesaim to facilitate international collaboration by encouraging investigators and institutions to adhere to a uniform set of research practices.

George Q. Daley of Children's Hospital Boston , chair of the Guidelines task force, comments, “We are proud that ISSCR can offer leadership in this call for self-governance and full public transparency in the fledgling field of human ES cell research. We stand for the open exchange of scientific ideas to promote innovation and increase public benefit through global advances made possible by human stem cell research.”

The Guidelines call for journal editors and granting agencies to require investigators to comply with the ISSCRGuidelines as a stipulation for publication or funding. The ISSCR encourages translation of the Guidelines into practice with the provision of sample documents for informed consent for the procurement of human research materials and for material transfer on the ISSCR Web site. The ISSCR seeks the support of its membership, that of other scientific societies, and the public to promote the adoption of the ISSCR Guidelines globally.

In its Feb. 2, 2007 issue, Science magazine is publishing a Policy Forum authored by the task force that provides a synopsis of the essential elements of the document.

The Guidelines and supplementary information will be available on the ISSCR Web site,, including:

Members of the ISSCR International Human Embryonic Stem Cell Guidelines Task Force are available for interview. Contact Deanna Marchetti (, +1-847-559-0846 X255) at ISSCR Headquarters.

Posted: February 1, 2007