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    Stem Cell Research: Bush vs Obama

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    In 500 words or less, describe the differences between Executive orders issued by President Bush in 2007 and by President Obama in 2009 regarding stem cell research. State your opinion and support it through references to either the law or cases in which this issue has been addressed in the courts.

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    Republicans and Democrats have opposing views on science and the way scientific experiments should be conducted. Nothing brings this more to the fore than embryonic stem cell research. So what is this all about?

    When biologist James Thomson of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, published a paper in Science that his team had derived cells from the inner mass of human embryos, which had been donated for research from IVF clinics all hell seemed to break loose. These cells could divide indefinitely in culture and had the potential to grow into cells from each of the three different "germ layers" of the embryo. Thus they had the potential to generate a wide range of human tissues and lead towards treatment of diseases as wide ranging as diabetes and Parkinson's. But the problem was that to get the embryonic stem cells the scientists had to destroy the embryo. This created furore amongst the pro-life groups. (For further details see The Republican War on Science, by Chris Mooney, Basic Books, 2005.)

    The executive order issued by President Bush in 2007 (number 13435, June 22, 2007) had the following points, and I quote:

    "The Secretary of Health and Human Services (Secretary) shall conduct ...