Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Life Links 12/2/09

Mauricio Roman summarizes a Harvard Business School case study on Planned Parenthood.
Internally, Planned Parenthood's difficulties stem from the uneven strength of its affiliates, and President Cecile Richards is worried. According to the Harvard case study, her organization faces "tough economic times, a hostile political environment, and limited ability to raise philanthropic dollars in a resource constrained area of the country….."

Difficulties such as these are driving down the number of Planned Parenthood affiliates, from 163 15 years ago to 91 in late 2009. And according to the Harvard case study, this consolidation is expected to continue with several of the remaining affiliates discussing mergers.

A 20-year-old woman in India has died from complications after having an abortion in a hospital. She was 5 months pregnant.

The New York Times says its unlikely that the U.S. Senate will vote on adding the Mikulski amendment to its health care reform legislation. Here’s National Right to Life’s letter explaining why they oppose the Mikulski amendment.

Scientists in Israel are using a new technique to turn adult stem cells into bone tissue and treat patients with severe bone loss.
Currently, the standard treatment for severe bone loss involves either amputation or a prolonged period of disability. The scientists said their new technology, called immuno-isolation, sorts mesenchymal stem cells from other cells residing in a bone marrow sample, using a specific antibody. The immuno-isolated cells then can be immediately used to form new bone tissue when implanted in laboratory animals, without a prolonged incubator growth period.

According to an ABC News blog, the National Institutes of Health will announce which embryonic stem cell lines have qualified for federal funding under its new guidelines.
NIH/STEM CELLS-The NIH is to announce the first approved lines under the new stem cell guidelines tomorrow at 12:30pm ET. Brian Hartman explains: “Back in March, President Obama announced the easing of limits on use of federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. In July, the administration required researchers to prove stem cell lines had been derived ethically to qualify. That means, per NIH, the embryo ‘must have been created for reproductive purposes, via in vitro fertilization, must be in excess of clinical need, and must have been donated voluntarily.’ Also – the donor cannot have been paid for the embryos. Tomorrow, NIH will announce which lines have met that bar. So they’ll finally be able to start -- if not immediately, in the near future -- using federal money to work on the stem cells.

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