Skip to comments.General Electric to Use Embryonic Stem Cells for Testing, Phase Out Lab Rats
Posted on 07/02/2009 1:21:39 PM PDT by wagglebee
BOSTON, Mass, July 1, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - General Electric has announced that it will use embryonic stem cells provided by Geron Corporation for the purpose of testing toxic effects of drug treatments.
GE issued a statement, attempting to preempt criticism over the decision, saying, "We acknowledge the considerable debate and take very seriously the ethical and societal issues associated with research using stem cells derived from embryonic or fetal tissue."
"We conduct our research in an ethically and scientifically responsible manner," the statement said.
However, embryonic stem cells have been the center of heated controversy since harvesting the cells requires the destruction of embryonic human beings.
But Geron Corporation indicates that in this case it believes that the ends justify the means.
"Up to three quarters of toxicity problems are not detected until preclinical or later stages of drug development and this significantly increases the cost of developing new drugs," Geron Corporation said in a press release, "Earlier detection of toxicity problems could reduce both overall drug development costs and potentially harmful patient exposure in clinical trials."
Konstantin Fielder, General Manager of Cell Technologies at GE Healthcare said that stem cells harvested from human embryos could even replace lab rats as the primary scientific testing method.
"Once you have human cells and you can get them in a standardized way, like you get right now your lab rats in a standardized way, you can actually do those experiments on those cells," he said.
Both GE and Geron have said that the stem cells to be used are listed on a National Institutes of Health registry, making them eligible for use in the United States.
Contact Information for General Electric:
Or by phone: (203) 373-2211
No, you have decided to kill babies to protect rats.
well, the rats can breath a sigh of relief another life form is taking their place
How does this make it more "ethical"?
IF there is nothing wrong with abortion, then why skirt the issue?
And mark my words, if fetal tissue returns results one day, they will need to farm fetuses to produce enough materials for wide use.
Cloning would also be "preferred" so you'd be more aware of what you were likely to "get".
But it'd still be genetic cannibalism. Nothing will change that.
mmmmmh, babies. mmmmmmh
Wonder what GE-NBC’s take on this issue will be. < /sarc >
Hitler would be proud of them. And Obama will give it his stamp of approval.
I guess they ran out of Jews?
You have the same concern I do.
I think the pro-life movement may be putting too many eggs into the "no proven successes" argument against embryonic stem cell research, rather than attacking the moral issue directly.
I, like you, shudder to think what's going to happen if the left is ever able to show any objective success in ESC research.
They refer to “ethical stem cell lines”. There ARE ethical lines available (from adults as well as other elements like umbilical cord stem cells).
That they refer to “ethical” is supposed to give them the upper hand on the argument. There is nothing ethical about their approach. They have co-opted the word.
They can continue down the hope and dream and faith path that stem cells (adult or fetal) will be the cure-all, but they may also lead to higher cancer rates and other bad results.
Which is why experimentation is done.
The main thrust of it seems to be in shielding abortion and fetal farming from restrictions or prohibition.
In Europe, they’ve looked at human-animal hybrids. So they can concoct a “sub-human” race that would also be “ethical” to experiment on. They just don’t GET IT.
OK this calls for a national BOYCOTT of GE and any of their other Co.. I am doing it any one else?
This article seems to indicate that they are going to use the embryonic stem cells for testing toxicity of drugs, not for stem cell therapy.
So they think it is more ethical to kill babies and see what the toxic effects of various chemicals/drugs are on the stem cells than to see what the toxic effects are on rats.
What, aren’t there enough Jews, blacks, or mentally retarded people around these days?
What is the reason for picking embryonic stem cell lines? Probably the same reason most scientists are for embryonic stem cell research in general: they are a$$holes who regard themselves as their own god.
And I have known a good number of scientists. I got a BS in chemistry from a state school. They are a$$holes in general.
I think they assume they will get less trouble from pro-lifers than PETA. I contacted them through the link above, and it wouldn’t be a bad idea for as many as possible to do the same. The longer we wait, the deeper they’ll be into implementing this changeover.
No doubt they’ll sell their rat cages and invest in a few good abortion clinics to supply them with stem cells.
Until the first drug that they tested exclusively with cells kills a few hundred people and they get their butts sued.
GE AKA The Soylent “Green” Company
GE’s new corporate slogan:
“GE: We Bring Good Things to Death”
This does not make sense.
There are already multitudes of cell lines. Not a single one of them is adequate for toxicology testing. There is no reason to think cells from embryos or fetuses would be adequate, either.
You can tell if a potential drug is cytotoxic using cell lines, and determine what the LD50 is for the specific cell lines being used in the testing. But there is no way to test every cell type to verify non-toxicity of a protodrug.
Furthermore, some deadly toxins are not lethal to cells. No amount of testing using cell lines (of any type) is going to catch a non-cytotoxic but still toxic protodrug. That’s why animals are used in toxicity testing: there simply is no alternative.
The use of cell lines is great for reducing animal use, but it cannot replace it.