Fifty-eight senators have asked President Bush to ease restrictions on stem cell research, with some noting that the late President Ronald Reagan’s Alzheimer’s disease could have been aided by expanded research.
In a letter to Bush, 42 Democrats, one independent and 15 Republican senators said the president’s policy adopted in 2001 is no longer adequate. A similar letter was sent in May by 206 House members.
The 2001 White House policy allowed research on 78 existing lines, or colonies, of stem cells, but banned the creation of new lines. Some scientists believe that stem cells—which can grow into almost any human tissue—hold treatments or cures for a host of debilitating diseases.