Attempts in Congress this past summer to loosen the federal-funding restrictions on embryonic stem cell research, while supported by a majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, were vetoed by President Bush. So, for the time being at least, embyronic stem cell research will remain in a quarantine from federal support that is likely to last considerably longer than forty days.
CIRM must operate independently of federal funding institutions
Current restrictions limit the use of federal funding to research that uses approved stem cell lines. Thus, for much of its work, CIRM cannot act in partnership with the largest institution for funding medical research in the world, the NIH. In addition, investigators who use CIRM funds to work outside the federal guidelines must keep this work physically and administratively separate from NIH-funded work. Managing these issues imposes a burden on the scientists, on the research institutions and on CIRM.