Pro-Life Group Condemns Nobel Prize Award to Stem Cell Scientists

Shinya Yamanaka and John Gurdon
A combination photo shows Kyoto University Professor Shinya Yamanaka of Japan (L) in Kyoto April, 2009 and John Gurdon of Britain in London Oct. 8, 2012. Scientists from Britain and Japan shared the Nobel Prize in Medicine on Monday for the discovery that adult cells can be reprogrammed back into stem cells which can turn into any kind of tissue and may one day repair damaged organs. Gurdon, 79, of the Gurdon Institute in Cambridge, Britain and Yamanaka, 50, of Kyoto University in Japan, discovered ways to create tissue that would act like embryonic cells, without the need to harvest embryos. They share the $1.2 million prize equally. Mandatory Credit REUTERS/Center for iPS Cell Research and Application, Kyoto University (L) and Suzanne Plunkett (R). (Reuters/KYODO)

Stem cell pioneers John Gurdon and Shinya Yamanaka have been awarded the Nobel prize for medicine or physiology in recognition of their works changing adult cells into stem cells. But pro-lifers are condemning the decision.

Although we cannot and must not disregard the achievements in the field of adult stem cell research—which has resulted in successful bone marrow transplants, treatments for leukemia, immune system and other blood disorders, cancers and autoimmune diseases, and others breakthroughs—Judie Brown, president of American Life League, says we must hold accountable those who hold themselves out as experts.  

“These scientists have been awarded a prestigious prize without due consideration, or perhaps in spite of their positions on the dignity of every human being from creation to death,” Brown says.

Brown is sounding the alarm on stem cell reprogramming methods and experiments that may involve an influx of youthful DNA to adult stem cells and result in the creation of embryonic stem cells from modified adult stem cells.

“We demand to know the ethical considerations used by these scientists, their true motives and the critical question of the source for the ‘youthful DNA.’ Are they using the genes of murdered preborn children or obtaining stem cells from fatty tissue, bone marrow or the umbilical cord after the birth of a baby? Are these methods intended to heal sick patients or are they just newfound genetic engineering techniques for reproductive purposes?” Brown asks.
 
With such complex subject matter, Brown is calling for vigilance.

“Technical language and prestigious prizes will not hide the truth. To encourage the murder of preborn human beings in order to facilitate scientific research is unethical and criminal,” she says. “And the ploy to redefine a human being through questionable ‘engineering’ will be exposed.”

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