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American Life League Condemns Nobel Prize Award to Scientists Gurdon and Yamanaka

Washington, D.C. – BBC News reports that stem cell pioneers John Gurdon and Shinya Yamanaka have been awarded the Nobel prize for medicine or physiology in recognition of their works changing adult cells into stem cells. Admonishing the awarding of this prize to these two men, Judie Brown, president of American Life League, issued the following statement:

We cannot and must not disregard the achievements in the field of adult stem cell research, which has resulted in successful bone marrow transplants; treatments for leukemia, immune system and other blood disorders; cancers and autoimmune diseases; and others. But we must hold accountable those who hold themselves out as experts.  These scientists have been awarded a prestigious prize without due consideration, or perhaps in spite of their positions on the dignity of every human being from creation to death.

We sound the alarm on stem cell reprogramming methods/experiments that may involve an influx of youthful DNA to adult stem cells, resulting in the creation of embryonic stem cells from modified adult stem cells. We demand to know the ethical considerations used by these scientists, their true motives, and the critical question of the source for the “youthful DNA.” Are they using the genes of murdered preborn children or obtaining stem cells from fatty tissue, bone marrow, or the umbilical cord after the birth of a baby? Are these methods intended to heal sick patients or are they just newfound genetic engineering techniques for reproductive purposes?

With such complex subject matter, we call for vigilance. Technical language and prestigious prizes will not hide the truth. To encourage the murder of preborn human beings in order to facilitate scientific research is unethical and criminal. And the ploy to redefine a human being through questionable “engineering” will be exposed.


American Life League, cofounded by Judie Brown in 1979, is the oldest national Catholic pro-life education and advocacy organization in the United States. For more information, please visit