University of Michigan researchers kill human embryos,
create embryonic stem cell line

On October 3, 2010, the University of Michigan announced they've created Michigan's first embryonic stem cell line. The line was created by removing cells from and thus killing a human embryo. The cell line joins approximately 76 other embryonic stem cell lines creating by other researchers. The human embryo destroyed for her stem cells was donated by a couple who had remaining embryos after going through in-vitro fertilization.

The University of Michigan press release touting the creation of Michigan's first embryonic stem cell line doesn't mention how many human embryos were killed to get this one stem cell line. The press release does say it took "several attempts," meaning several human beings were killed in order to obtain this stem cell line. Based on previous attempts to create embryonic stem cell lines by other institutions such as the University of Wisconsin and the Jones Institute, researchers likely killed between 4-10 human embryos.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, "While we knew University of Michigan researchers were planning on killing human embryos for their cells, we are saddened to know that human beings were sacrificed without their consent for this unproven research. It is wrong to kill some human beings in the vague hope of treating others. There are many life-affirming alternatives to embryonic stem cell research, it is dishonorable that some researchers in Michigan feel they have to destroy human lives. Embryos who do not have a voice are human enough for experimentation, but not human enough to be given a chance at life."

The University of Michigan has also been able to create induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. iPS cells are cells which have the same properties as embryonic stem cells, but don't require the destruction of human embryos. To date, human embryonic stem cells have never been successfully used to treat human patients.

Right to Life of Michigan is a nonpartisan, nonsectarian, nonprofit organization of diverse and caring people united to peacefully protect the precious gift of human life from fertilization to natural death.


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