OLIVIA SUMMERS, ACLJ
In a disturbing development, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has granted an extension for a university’s twisted research using aborted baby parts.
Not so long ago, we told you that HHS had cancelled a contract that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had with Advanced Bioscience Resources, Inc. (ABR), a fetal tissue procurement organization that has been referred for criminal investigation.
While it sounds like science fiction, the FDA was reportedly working with ABR to create “humanized mice” using the body parts of aborted babies. When that contract was cancelled, we applauded HHS for taking this action and quelling the market for aborted fetal tissue.
Thus, it is extremely perplexing to learn that HHS has agreed to grant an extension of its contract with the University of California at San Francisco for a similar program. We told you about this program as well, which is also attempting to make “humanized mice” for medical research, using aborted babies’ body parts.
This twisted research will reportedly also end up costing taxpayers nearly $100 million dollars:
These creatures are made by implanting mice with human tissues taken from late-term aborted babies.
The HHS’s multi-million-dollar contract with UCSF that requires the construction of these “humanized mice” creates a demand–driven by federal tax dollars–for tissue taken from late-term aborted babies. According to an estimate it has published on its website, the National Institutes of Health (which is a division of HHS) will spend $95 million this fiscal year alone on research that–like UCSF’s “humanized mouse” contract–uses human fetal tissue.
Under the new 90-day extension, the contract—which the government calls “Humanized Mouse Models for HIV Therapeutics Development”–will run through June 5.
What’s truly disconcerting is that, as we’ve stated before, in engaging in these contracts and funding this research, HHS is helping create a market for baby body parts. Rather than taking action that values the sanctity of human life, HHS is – if only inadvertently – encouraging abortionists to increase the supply. The babies whose tissue has been used in these projects were reportedly viable, and, given the opportunity to be born, could have lived happy, productive lives. Instead, they were murdered through elective abortions, and their body parts used in horrendous ways.
A 2017 journal article said that the human fetal intestines used to create “SCID-hu gut mice” in research funded by this contract “were obtained from women with normal pregnancies before elective termination for nonmedical reasons.” The article said the intestines came from babies 18 to 24 weeks in gestational age.
In 2016, the House Energy and Commerce Committee investigated fetal-tissue research and specifically questioned why aborted babies were being used, rather than pregnancies that ended due to miscarriage or other natural causes, rather than babies that were selectively terminated. According to the report an expert from Harvard University essentially claimed it came down to a matter of timing:
When the House Energy and Commerce Committee investigated fetal-tissue procurement in 2016, Harvard University responded to an inquiry from Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D.-Ill.) by providing the committee with a background paper in which it explained why mice with human immune systems could only be created with tissue taken from aborted babies.
“Mice that have human immune systems are an invaluable scientific resource, but these mice are engineered to this condition only by means of the use of human fetal material,” said the Harvard backgrounder.
“If human fetal tissue is needed, why can it not be obtained from miscarriages instead of abortion?” the backgrounder rhetorical asked.
“Here, timing is very important,” it said. “Almost all miscarriages happen at home or in locations in which fetal material is not recovered and, importantly, preserved in a usable state.”
This is alarming and cannot be permitted to continue. However noble their intentions with this medical research may be, these universities and scientists must, and can, find another way.
Our tax dollars should not be used to fund research that depends heavily on abortion – particularly when the abortion industry is already supported by our non-elective taxpayer funding. It’s got to stop.
The ACLJ already issued a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to expose this sickening contract, and we will continue to pressure the federal bureaucracy to comply with the law and produce the requested documents. We will not let up until we expose and stop this abhorrent taxpayer-funded experimentation with the body parts of aborted babies.
When HHS cancelled its contract through the FDA, we thought they were taking steps in the right direction. We must again tell them the American people do not want to pay for abortion or disgusting abortion-reliant experimentation. We cannot allow them to continue creating a market for aborted babies.
We need you to stand with us and make your voice heard.
Used with the permission of the American Center for Law and Justice.
Olivia Summers is Associate Counsel for Public Policy with the ACLJ, focusing on pro-life advocacy and protecting the freedoms of speech and religion. Olivia earned her Juris Doctor from Regent University School of Law. While at Regent, Olivia clerked for the ACLJ and served as a board member for Regent Journal of International Law, was a member of the Honor Council, and was actively involved in Regent Students for Life. In addition, Olivia spent one summer interning at the ECLJ where she gained experience in international law and human rights issues. Prior to attending Regent, Olivia earned her B.A. in History from the University of Wyoming. Olivia joined the ACLJ full-time after graduating from Regent. She is admitted to practice in Virginia and Washington D.C.