|The California's stem agency's rundown on its clinical |
trials. Some of the trials have saved lives.
No more applications for research funding are being accepted. The cash is running out, perhaps as early as the end of August.
In a posting on its blog, The Stem Cellar, the agency declared,
"It’s never easy to tell someone that they are too late, that they missed the deadline. It’s particularly hard when you know that the person you are telling that to has spent years working on a project and now needs money to take it to the next level. But in science, as in life, it’s always better to tell people what they need to know rather than what they would like to hear."The news is no surprise to persons who follow the agency. But today brought a more clearly emerging sense of finality.
The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), as the agency is formally known, was created in 2004 by voters who also provided $3 billion in bond funding. However, the CIRM ballot measure also contained the seeds of destruction for the agency. No other cash was provided. No other significant means of funding was laid out.
Today, the agency is pinning its hopes for survival on a yet-to-be-written ballot initiative for the November 2020 ballot. To bridge the gap between now and then, CIRM has been attempting for months to raise privately more than $200 million. So far, no results have emerged publicly.
"Over the years we have built a pipeline of promising projects and without continued support many of those projects face a difficult future. Funding at the federal level is under threat and without CIRM there will be a limited number of funding alternatives for them to turn to.
"Telling researchers we don’t have any money to support their work is hard. Telling patients we don’t have any money to support work that could lead to new treatments for them, that’s hardest of all."