Friday, January 13, 2006

New Money-Raising Effort at CIRM

The California stem cell agency began a new, $2 million fundraising drive yesterday to pay for such things as a national conference in May on the medical risks of human egg donations and how to reduce them, according to the San Diego Union Tribune.

Reporter Terri Somers quoted Zach Hall, president of CIRM, as saying the effort is aimed at financing “nongrant” scientific activity. Hall also said the agency is now focusing on creating a structure that will allow it to move quickly once litigation against it is resolved.
"We want to hit the ground running once the money comes in. Rather than sending out a slow and gradual stream of funding, the plan now is to let a torrent of funding flow like waters set free from a sluice gate."

Somers wrote that the “image of a torrent worries” Jesse Reynolds of the Center for Genetics and Society.
“He wondered if there was enough good science to warrant such funding at this time. But he was also somewhat comforted by the plan.
“Originally, the institute's leaders talked about making their first grants last May, which Reynolds said was ludicrous. To hear them now talking about having their organizational infrastructure in place first sounds better, he said.”

The latest fundraising effort is in addition to the $50 million effort to sell bond anticipation notes.

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