Exploring Alternatives to Fetal Tissue Research

Subcommittee on Healthcare, Benefits, and Administrative Rules
Subcommittee on Healthcare, Benefits, and Administrative Rules
Subcommittee on Government Operations
Subcommittee on Government Operations
Hearing Date: December 13, 2018 10:00 am 2154 Rayburn HOB

PURPOSE:
  • To evaluate the ethical considerations of fetal tissue research and explore alternative research methods.
  • To discuss the recent steps taken by the Administration to expand efforts in developing and implementing the use of alternatives.
BACKGROUND:
  • Since the 1920s, scientists have used cells from fetal tissue in their research. This year, the National Institutes of Health is estimated to provide approximately $100 million in funding for research grants that involve the use of fetal tissue.
  • In September, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) canceled its contract with a fetal tissue procurement company, citing concerns the company was not meeting applicable fetal tissue regulations. HHS subsequently initiated an audit regarding their human fetal tissue acquisitions and is continuing its review of “whether adequate alternatives exist to the use of human fetal tissue in HHS funded research.”

Witnesses and testimonies

Name Title Organization Panel Document
Dr. Tara Sander Lee Associate Scholar Charlotte Lozier Institute
Dr. David Prentice Advisory Board Member Midwest Stem Cell Therapy Center
Dr. Sally Temple Scientific Director, Principal Investigator and Co-Founder Neural Stem Cell Institute