Speaking to a national audience (at the National Stem Cell Symposium in Washington, D.C., sponsored by the Center for American Progress) Friday, Gov. Jim Doyle portrayed Wisconsin as a leader in stem-cell research whose future is jeopardized by politics.

A report says Wisconsin and California together account for 97 percent of stem-cell research funding nationwide. In the next 10 years, the report says Wisconsin will spend $486.5 million to California’s $3 billion on stem cell research.

The study says states are limited to providing about 10 percent of total funding for stem research, and that of the $600 million in federal funding, less than one-third is devoted to embryonic stem-cell research.

Supporters of stem-cell research say the most promising scientific advances are likely to come from embryonic stem-cell research, and not the adult stem lines currently approved for federal funding.

Doyle, whose remarks aired live on C-Span, said chances of finding cures for debilitating diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are threatened by politicians in Congress and the Wisconsin Legislature “who want to see stem-cell research stopped in its tracks.”

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