A nonprofit group has filed a federal complaint alleging that Stanford University failed to disclose funding for research involving human fetal tissue and animals — a pervasive problem, the group says, that’s leaving taxpayers in the dark about controversial experiments.
The White Coat Waste Project (WCW), which opposes publicly funded animal experiments, pointed in its Tuesday complaint to Stanford press releases on experiments aimed at regenerating human cartilage, which is difficult for adults to regrow. These experiments are attracting special attention, however, as they utilized fetal fingers and other tissue transplanted into mice.
Without specifying the number of federal dollars involved, WCW alleges the university violated a law known as the Stevens Amendment. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) states the amendment requires press releases and other announcements to “the percentage and dollar amount of the total costs of the program or project funded with federal money.”
While it’s unclear how much federal money was allocated to the experiments flagged by WCW, the group says “the NIH grants listed as funding sources on both papers have received over $60 million.”
Stanford’s studies attempted to regenerate cartilage and identify a skeletal stem cell by implanting human tissue into mice. Both experiments obtained tissue from StemExpress, the tissue procurer that Congress investigated in relation to anti-abortion activist David Daleiden’s undercover videos of Planned Parenthood. While each of those organizations has denied trafficking fetal tissue, questions have been raised due to Daleiden’s 2015 videos and documents unearthed during his civil trial with the abortion provider.
“Fourteen human fetal samples were obtained from Stemexpress (Folsom, CA) and shipped overnight,” one of the study papers reads. “Samples ranged in age from 10 to 20 weeks of gestation with no restrictions on race or gender. Fetal sample procurement and handling was in accordance with the guidelines set by the Institutional Review Board.”
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