|The on-going story about embryonic stem cell research is hotly debated. Some Americans are offended by the idea (on moral and ethical grounds) while others' think the opportunity to advance science should outweigh these concerns.|
In 2004, this issue was very much in the news with many stories describing the medical conditions that would benefit from embryonic stem cell research. At the time, work with adult stem cells was less visible because it seemed some progress would only be made by using human embryos.
With the recent scientific advancement in the ability to convert adult cells into effective candidates for stem cell research, it seems like science has changed the assumptions that were fundamental in 2004.
Shortly after this scientific achievement, President Obama has been covered lifting the ban on embryonic stem cell research on the basis of a desire to be ethical and allowing reason to prevail.
I think he is right, and I think it would be a very useful feature story to look into the different points of view on this topic in-light of the impact of the latest scientific research results.
If the reason for using human embryos is no longer a good reason, “Why is it important to increase the use of human embryos in research?” I think that linking the reasons back in 2004 with the scientific reality in 2009 with the President's subsequent decision might present meaningful information and raise useful questions. Perhaps the President's action is more symbolic than substantive, or perhaps connecting the three topics has not yet been considered.