What happened: Despite having gone through a rigorous scientific review process, 13 out of 14 National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants submitted since September 2019 that involve fetal tissue are likely to be rejected based solely on the recommendations of the Human Fetal Tissue Research Ethics Advisory Board at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The advisory board’s formation, membership, charter, and review processes all point to significant biases that appear designed to sideline science that involves fetal tissue research.
Why it matters: Human fetal tissue has played a pivotal role in research and medical advancements in fields such as vaccines, transplants, HIV/AIDS, Zika, Parkinson’s disease, and recently COVID-19. Millions of people owe their health or their lives to fetal tissue research. Considering that there are no good alternatives to replace human fetal tissue, the advisory committee’s attempts to block funding to nearly all federal research that uses fetal tissue research represents a clear attempt to elevate political considerations over the ability to fund needed scientific research.
Learn more about how this new tactic to demolish fetal tissue research, leading scientists in both academic and government settings being unable to carry out life-saving medical research.