Embryonic stem-cell research doesn’t help

The article “New, Natural Breast Reconstruction Following Mastectomy” (Editor’s note: The article to which the author is referring is an advertisement on page nine of the CR, April 26) reporting on the shift from using muscle tissue to using fat tissue and the benefits of the switch, was closely followed by an Internet report that surgeons in Japan and Europe are using fat tissue and autologous stem cells.

Here are some quotes from the report: “The stem cells enable the fat to grow its own blood supply, which leads to the fat becoming a part of the breast. Some of the cells produce more fat and other cells change into a living blood supply for new breast tissue that grows into the treated breast. Because the patient uses her own stem cells and fat, the technique carries no risk of the tissue being rejected by the body.”

This is yet another use for adult stem cells which are saving and improving thousands of lives. But embryonic stem-cell research, despite all the hype, “hope” and “promise” we keep hearing about, decades of research with animal embryonic stem cells and almost a decade of research with human embryonic stem cells in many places around the world using billions of dollars, have done nothing to help anyone.

If our legislators care about people, they will not spend taxpayer money on the unproductive embryonic stem-cell research, but fund adult stem-cell research and delivery of those treatments to the sick and dying.

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.