Journal of Medical Ethics 33 (6):311-312 (2007)

Stem cell research represents the most promising field of investigation for treatment of many degenerative diseases. The veto against this research condemns millions of people to a life with little hope of cureO vous, les boutefeux, ô vous les bons apôtres, Mourez donc les premiers, nous vous cédons le pas, Mais de grâce, morbleu! laissez vivre les autres!Last year, Rome hosted the first meeting of the World Congress For Freedom of Scientific Research.The Congress was organised by the Luca Coscioni Association, an organisation of scientists, patients and citizens committed to freedom of scientific research and the assertion of the rights of patients and disabled people.The Congress was exceptional for at least three reasons:First, the moving force of the whole congress, and of the many struggles for freedom conducted by the Luca Coscioni Association, has been Luca Coscioni himself, the President of the Association. Despite the severe degenerative illness that rendered Luca immobile and destined him to tragic and premature death, Luca remained committed to the ideals of freedom, and on the first day of the Congress, just days before his death, he eloquently expressed his appeal. This not only touched every one present, but also reminded us all that when we talk of scientific research, we talk of real people, who have real lives and real illnesses, and who are destined to die prematurely and in agony unless treatment is found—and hope for treatment for many degenerative diseases bears upon embryonic stem cell research. Luca reminded us that while the public discusses …
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DOI 10.1136/jme.2007.020560
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