Illinois funds $10M in stem cell research

April 25, 2006

The state of Illinois is funding $10 million in controversial stem cell research involving heart disease, cancer and other serious diseases.

But continued funding is in doubt, with legislative critics planning to block Gov. Rod Blagojevich's plan to spend $100 million during a five-year period, The Chicago Sun-Times reported Tuesday.

The money is to finance research aimed at using stem cells to remedy such ills as diabetes, heart disease, and spinal cord injuries. The U.S. government has banned the use of federal money for such research using embryonic stem cells, which would be covered by the state funding.

If the Illinois Legislature balks at funding, as it previously did, Blagojevich indicated he might try another route.

"If there are other ways to do it unilaterally, I will do it," Blagojevich told reporters Monday.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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