Laura Bush: There is no cure for Alzheimer's around the corner

From a speech by First Lady of the United States, defending the ban on embryonic stem-cell research
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The Independent Online

I'm pleased that my husband is committed to advancing medical research. And although you might not know about it from listening to the news lately, the President also looks forward to medical breakthroughs that may arise from stem-cell research. Few people know that George W Bush is the only President to ever authorise federal funding for embryonic stem-cell research.

I'm pleased that my husband is committed to advancing medical research. And although you might not know about it from listening to the news lately, the President also looks forward to medical breakthroughs that may arise from stem-cell research. Few people know that George W Bush is the only President to ever authorise federal funding for embryonic stem-cell research.

Last year, the federal government invested $25m in embryonic stem-cell research and nearly $191m in other stem-cell research, adult stem cell research. The President has provided a boost to research in a very promising new field, while recognising that this is an issue with moral implications that must not be treated lightly.

My father died of Alzheimer's disease and I share the President's eagerness to find a cure for this devastating illness. I hope that stem-cell research will yield cures and therapies for a myriad of illnesses.

But I know that embryonic stem cell research is very preliminary right now, and the implication that cures for Alzheimer's are around the corner is just not right, and it's really not fair to the people who are watching a loved one suffer with this disease.

Research does offer the advancement of scientific knowledge and a growing understanding of how stem cells can be used to treat illness. The President's policy makes it possible for researchers to explore the potential of stem cells, while respecting the ethical and moral implications associated with this research.

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