The NIH has approved four new human embryonic stem cell lines for federally funded research. The lines, from CIRM-funded BioTime, have one thing going for them that many other lines don't. They were developed in compliance with Good Manufacturing Practice requirements, which is a critical step for developing a transplantation therapy.

At CIRM we routinely get emails and phone calls from patients desperately seeking clinical trials for themselves or for family members. With all the talk about future stem cell cures, it only makes sense that people would be looking to stem cells for help.

CIRM doesn't maintain our own list of stem cell-based trials. Instead, we've always referred people to the national listing of all registered clinical trials maintained by the NIH:

Thanks to UC Davis stem cell scientist and CIRM grantee Paul Knoepfler for ferreting out the three judges who will preside over the September 27 D.C. Circuit Court hearing regarding the August 23 injunction on federal funding for human embryonic stem cell research.

In his blog entry, Knoepfler writes that of the three judges one is a Clinton appointee and two were appointed by Bush Jr.

For now, the NIH is again able to fund research projects using human embryonic stem cells. However, if there's anything to be learned from the past few weeks, it's that the funding is uncertain. The only way to ensure continuous support at the federal level would be legislation specifically legalizing research using those cells.

They can't fund stem cell research...
They can...
They can't fund stem cell research...
They can..

For now. In the "He loves me; He loves me not" game of stem cell research funding, the current petal removed by the U.S. Court of Appeals puts funding for human embryonic stem cell research back within the pervue of the NIH. Today the court put a hold on Judge Royce Lamberth's ruling that effectively halted NIH funding of human embryonic stem cell research. Bloomberg wrote: