UN Holds Landmark Conference On Stem Cell Research And Therapeutic Cloning; Dean Fischbach To Moderate

Leading Scientists from four continents to address UN delegates on June 2 in New York City

Coral Gables, May 11, 2004: The Genetics Policy Institute (GPI) will host a landmark event for delegates of the United Nations focusing on the science of reproductive and therapeutic cloning.

"This conference presents an opportunity for GPI and scientific leaders in the biomedical research community to openly discuss the repercussion of an international ban on therapeutic cloning and draw a clear distinction between unethical reproductive cloning and this lifesaving science," said GPI Executive Director Bernard Siegel. "We will present leading scientists from four continents including an historic visit to New York City from notable South Korean scientists, Drs. Hwang and Moon, to dispel the confusion and myths about stem cell research."

Last year, GPI successfully led a grassroots effort to defend therapeutic cloning research in the United Nations, which was considering a ban on all forms of cloning research, including therapeutic cloning. After contentious debate the deliberations were deferred until October 2004.

"A UN vote to ban this important scientific research would be tragic and destroy the hopes of millions suffering from Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, diabetes, cancer, spinal cord injuries, heart disease, ALS and other devastating conditions for which no cure is known," Siegel said. "Every human being is affected by this vote and that is why GPI is creating a grassroots constituency. People need to know that therapeutic research, which is not reproductive cloning, will lead to breakthrough cures such as creating replacement tissue that the human body won't reject."

The June 2, 2004 Science Conference, "Human Cloning Issues in All Its Aspects for the United Nations," will be held at the United Nations Headquarters. Conference panelists include the leading scientists in the fields of somatic-cell nuclear transfer, in vitro-fertilization, experimental biology and regenerative medicine. The conference will be moderated by Gerald Fischbach. M.D. of Columbia University and include: Dr. Dalton Dietrich of the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis (USA) Dr. Lawrence Goldstein of UC San Diego (USA) Dr. Rudolf Jaenisch of MIT’s Whitehead Institute (USA) Dr. Woo Suk Hwang of Seoul National University (Republic of Korea) Dr. Shin Yong Moon of Seoul National University (Republic of Korea) Dr. Douglas Melton of Harvard University (USA) Dr. Camillo Ricordi of the Diabetes Research Institute (USA) Dr. Gerald Schatten of the University of Pittsburgh (USA) Dr. Alan Trounson of Monash University (Australia) Dr. John Wagner of the University of Minnesota (USA) Dr. Ian Wilmut of the Roslin Institute (United Kingdom) The conference is co-sponsored by the United Nations' Asian Group of Legal Experts Meeting, and has been endorsed by the American Society for Cell Biology, American Society for Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Coalition for the Advancement for Medical Research, Daniel Heumann Fund for Spinal Cord Research, Diabetes Research Institute, James Halperin Foundation, Josiah’s Will Foundation, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, Michael J Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, Monash University (Australia), National Health Council, New York Biotechnology Association, Stem Cell Action Network, Andrew Tobias & Charles Nolan, Brook Byers, Alan Walton, Darby & Darby and the Alpha-One Foundation.



Diabetes Research Institute, GPI, Lawrence Goldstein, Rudolf Jaenisch, United Nations, United Nations Headquarters