Thursday, January 11, 2007

Beware the White Coat Crowd

Health industry gadfly Merrill Goozner is taking a jaundiced view of the stem cell arms race in states across the country.

Citing New York's latest proposal and California among other states, Goozner wrote on The Huffington Post:

"Stem cell research is promising, and it shouldn't be impeded by a bunch of anti-science right-to-lifers with God and the president on their side. But like any strain of research, the likelihood of a major medical breakthrough coming from stem cells is probably not that much greater than gene therapy, the human genome project, the war on cancer or any of the multi-billion-dollar medical research programs that came before it. A lot of knowledge and a few good things will come out of stem cell research, but will it make those with severed spines stand up and walk? Call me irreligious, but I'm skeptical."
He continued:
"Of course, there will be some new jobs created for university researchers, their underpaid foreign graduate students, and the white coat crowd in the biotech industrial parks subsidized by the taxpayers. But is this really the best use of government subsidies, especially at a time when the health care sector -- 16 percent of GDP and still growing -- is sapping the vitality of the rest of the economy? Has anyone given any thought to how much some of these breakthrough stem cell technologies might cost, and how the rest of the economy might pay for them?"
Goozner is directs the Integrity in Science Project at the Washington-based Center for Science in the Public Interest. Sphere: Related Content

No comments:

Post a Comment