Stem Cell Controversy at UC Irvine Addressed at Symposium on Law, Ethics and Science FRIDAY

Flanagan Lab's submission to the third annual Stem Cell Artwork collection.
Flanagan Lab's submission to the third annual Stem Cell Artwork collection.
UC Irvine Health Advancement

Issues rooted in law, science, technology and ethics converge at UC Irvine all day Friday. No, it's not a Dr. Who marathon on a Middle Earth dorm room television. It's the 2015 stem cell symposium "The Challenge of Informed Consent in Times of Controversy" at the Sue & Bill Gross Stem Cell Research Center.

Running from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and co-hosted by the center and UCI School of Law, the interdisciplinary symposium explores whether the Food and Drug Administration and other government agencies should intensify the regulation of human subject research and establish enforcement standards. The topic arose from concerns about the informed consent process used in studies on the Irvine campus and the adequacy of information-sharing among pharmaceutical companies, research trial sites, principal investigators, human research subjects and the public.

Questions to be addressed include: Does informed consent convey different meanings depending on who invokes the term? When do we know that consent is informed? What are human research subjects entitled to know before, during and after agreeing to participate in clinical trials? And how might the pushback on fetal tissue research impact the scientific development of vaccines, research on Alzheimer's disease or other medical advancements?

Hopefully answering those and other questions will be: keynote lecturer Professor Patricia J. Williams, James L. Dohr Professor of Law, Columbia University (and The Nation columnist); Dr. Aileen Anderson, professor of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation and associate director of the Sue & Bill Gross Stem Cell Center, UCI; Dr. Geoffrey Lomax, senior officer, Medical Standards, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, San Francisco; and Dr. Larry Couture, senior vice president, Center for Applied Technology, Beckman Research Institute, City of Hope, Duarte; and Dr. Jeffrey Kahn, Robert Henry Levi and Ryda Hecht Levi Professor of Bioethics and Public Policy, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md.

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Also, Dr. Laurie Zoloth, professor of Religious Studies, Bioethics and Medical Humanities, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago; Marcy Darnovsky, executive director, Center for Genetics and Society, Berkeley; Deborah Zoe Laufer, playwright and author of Informed Consent; Professor Michele Goodwin, Chancellor's Professor of Law; director, Center for Biotechnology & Global Health Policy, UCI School of Law; Professor Maxwell Gregg Bloche, co-director, Georgetown-Johns Hopkins Joint Program in Law and Public Health, Washington, D.C.; and Professor Radhika Rao, UC Hastings College of Law, San Francisco.

Dr. Sidney Golub, director, Sue & Bill Gross Stem Cell Research Center, UCI, will introduce keynoter Williams.

Registration is free for UCI students, staff and faculty and $20 for everyone else by clicking here.

Can't make it out? The symposium will be livestreamed or available via a video recording afterward at:

Email: Twitter: @MatthewTCoker. Follow OC Weekly on Twitter @ocweekly or on Facebook!

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