An Italian court has informed scientists that they have no right to demand a halt to a call for research proposals that specifically excludes the use of human embryonic stem cells — even though their use is legal.
The researchers had objected when the exclusion was added by politicians to a text agreed by a committee of scientific experts (see Nature 460, 19; 2009). They argued that it contravenes a constitutional right to freedom of research.
The court said that only research institutes, not individuals, were eligible to object. The scientists are appealing against the decision in a higher court.
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Italian court sidesteps stem-cell challenge. Nature 460, 449 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1038/460449c