NYSCF Supports Final NIH Stem Cell Guidelines

Guidelines are major step forward; NYSCF hopes to continue dialogue for improvement of scientific advancement.

NYSCF has issued a a press release commenting on the Final Guidelines for Human Stem Cell Research that were issued today by the National Institutes of Health. As you may recall, NYSCF found the initial draft of the guidelines to be quite limiting, and we are very pleased that the NIH has incorporated many of the recommendations put forth by NYSCF and by other organizations that responded to the request to comment on the initial guidelines.

The guidelines still do not permit Federal funds to be used for all types of the most advanced stem cell research, however, including parthenogenesis and SCNT. And as you know, other restrictions prohibit the use of Federal funds for the creation of new human embryonic stem cell lines. But the guidelines announced today are a significant step forward. NYSCF will continue to use private funds to ensure that all avenues of stem cell research are explored in our search for cures.


President Obama’s Leadership Noted, Although More Work Remains

NEW YORK, NY (July 6, 2009) – The New York Stem Cell Foundation (NYSCF) supports the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Final Guidelines for Human Stem Cell Research that were issued today.  Susan L. Solomon, NYSCF CEO, applauded the NIH for listening carefully to the public response to its earlier draft guidelines and its willingness to make modifications in furtherance of stem cell science.  “We are pleased that the NIH guidelines issued today provide a way in which funding may be considered for existing stem cell lines, on which current research is being done. President Barack Obama’s leadership on this issue, which will impact generations to come, is to be applauded.”

“The establishment of the stem cell registry is very important, as is the fact that much of the prescriptive language has been made more flexible,” noted Kevin C. Eggan, NYSCF Chief Scientific Officer. “I remain disappointed, however, that somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) and parthenogenesis derived cell lines are not eligible for federal funding and that stem cells derived from embryos created for research are also excluded. We look forward to continuing a dialogue in these areas, for the improvement of scientific advancement.”


”The NIH guidelines are clear, thoughtful and comprehensive “an extraordinary result, given this huge undertaking, the complexity of the issue, and the magnitude of interest from the scientific community, advocacy groups, medical organizations, and private citizens,” said Zach Hall, Ph.D., a NYSCF Board Member, and former Director of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. “The NIH handled the guideline review process with the care and attention that the vital issue of stem cell research deserves.”


Solomon added, “Today’s announcement is a major step forward and we are grateful to the NIH for its efforts. We hope that the NIH and other federal policy entities will continue to foster discussion so that additional guidelines will be inclusive of all promising avenues of current research, including the creation of disease- and patient-specific human embryonic stem cell lines.” 


Read the Final NIH Guidelines »

Download the NYSCF Press Release as a PDF »