Wednesday, August 22, 2018

'Better Than Hope' -- An Advocate's View of California's $3 Billion Stem Cell Research Program

Don Reed 
Longtime patient advocate Don Reed appealed to California lawmakers last week to support the state's stem cell research effort, which expects to run out of money for new awards at the end of next year.

He said,
"Today, thanks to the 7.2 million voters who authorized the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, or CIRM, we have something better than hope; we have results, accomplishments, people made well—and a systematic way to fight chronic disease."
Reed was among the persons testifying last week before the state Assembly Select Committee on Biotechnology.

He  is vice president of Americans for Cures, a nonprofit group founded by Robert Klein, a real estate investment banker and who ran the ballot initiative campaign that created the $3 billion California stem cell agency. Klein was also the agency's first chairman and may lead another ballot initiative in November 2020 to renew the agency with an additional $5 billion.

Here are links to the remarks at the hearing by CIRM CEO Maria Millan, Art Torres, vice chairman of the CIRM board, and David Jensen, publisher of this web site.  Tomorrow the California Stem Cell Report will carry a look at the remarks by Jan Nolta, head of the stem cell program at UC Davis.  

The full hearing can be seen here and downloaded with closed captioning. An audio file is also available at the same URL. Here is the text of Reed's remarks.
(Some readers have reported that they cannot download Reed's comments shown below. However, I cannot detect any problem with that process. If you would like a PDF of Reed's remarks, please email me at

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