Assembly bill would prohibit research using fetal cells - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Assembly bill would prohibit research using fetal cells, tissue

MADISON (WKOW) -- A bill aimed at outlawing the use of fetal body parts in research and experiments is causing a lot of concern within Wisconsin's bio-tech industry.

Assembly Bill 225, authored by Rep. Andre Jacque (R-DePere), defines fetal body parts as "a cell, tissue, organ, or other part of, or any material derived from any cell or tissue of, an unborn child who is aborted by an induced abortion."

Bryan Renk, Executive Director of the leading Wisconsin bio-tech advocacy group "BioForward", tells 27 News the effects of the law would be devastating to dozens of research companies in the state.  Renk says the use of fetal stem cell lines is widespread throughout the industry and that some companies would likely be forced to leave Wisconsin if the bill becomes law.

UW-Madison's Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Center would also be negatively impacted by AB 225.

Rep. Jacque cites the fact that at least five other states, including Ohio and Illinois, have laws with similar language on the books.

Rep. Jacque introduced the same language as AB 214 in 2011, but that bill failed to get out of committee.

This is the third bill Rep. Jacque has introduced in the past two weeks to put further restrictions on abortion-related activities in the state. 

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