A three judge panel of the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia stayed the recent district court ruling which voided President Obama’s executive order permitting Federal funding for research on an expanded number of embryogenic stem cell lines (ESCs), pending a final ruling by the appellate court. Therefore, the NIH can continue to review grant applications seeking funding for research on ESC lines, other than the small number permitted under the Bush order, and can continue funding projects approved under either order. Prior to this ruling, it was not clear if even the Bush executive order was reinstated or if the Congressional “Dickey-Wicker amendment” barred all ESC research, as interpreted by the district court judge. A final ruling in Sherley v. Sebelious, 10-5287 (D.C. Cir.) may not be handed down until mid-2011. Some room to breathe. You can read the Bloomberg article here.
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Warren D. Woessner