Public supports stem cell and cloning research, poll reveals

New York: A poll commissioned by the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research (CAMR) shows a strong majority of Americans solidly support embryonic stem cell and therapeutic cloning research.

A nationwide survey of more than 1,000 adults found that the more respondents learned about the research, the more they supported its use to help treat some of life’s most debilitating diseases and conditions.

“We’ve spent years educating Members of Congress about the benefits of embryonic stem cell and therapeutic cloning research—separating facts from scare-tactic fiction,” said Daniel Perry, President of CAMR. “And the more time we spent, the better result we got. Now we see the same happening with the American public—the more they know the more they support it and understand why it’s critical to move the research forward,” added Perry.

Of the respondents polled 59% strongly or somewhat favored embryonic stem cell research, and only 33% opposed or strongly opposed it. But after a brief description of the research was read, the percentage in favor increased to 68% compared to only 28% opposed.

A question regarding the use of cloning to develop stem cells found that 60% strongly or somewhat favored the research, and only 35% somewhat or strongly opposed it. However, after a more detailed description of what therapeutic cloning research involves was read, the more respondents favored the research, 72% compared with only 23% opposed.

“The American people are clearly ready for a change in policy on stem cell research and therapeutic cloning. The millions of patients who stand to benefit, as well as their loved ones, have a clear message for policy makers: We support this research and we need your help,” stressed Perry. CAMR, comprised of over 90 nationally-recognized patient groups, universities, and scientific societies, led the charge to support federal funding of embryonic stem cell research and has led the efforts opposing a ban on therapeutic cloning.

Of the 1,045 people responding, the specific breakdown of responses was as follows: 59% said they favored medical research that uses stem cells from human embryos, (30% strongly favor, 29% somewhat favor); 33% are opposed, (13% somewhat oppose and 20% strongly oppose), and 8% of respondents answered they did not know. Once a description of embryonic stem cell research was read, 68% said they favored it, (39% strongly favor, and 29% somewhat favor), only 28% opposed the research (11% somewhat oppose, and 16% strongly oppose), and 4% responded they did not know. For therapeutic cloning, 60% of Americans approved the research, (27% strongly approved, 33% somewhat approved), whereas 35% disapproved (12% somewhat, and 23% strongly), and 5% of respondents answered they did not know. Once a description of therapeutic cloning research was read, 72% favored it (30% strongly, 42% somewhat), and roughly 23% opposed the research (11% somewhat, 11% strongly), and 6% of respondents answered they did not know.

Slightly more men than women favor embryonic stem cell and therapeutic cloning research: 71% of men and 66% of women were in favor of embryonic stem cell research, and 75% of men and 68% of women favored therapeutic cloning research after a description was read. Americans who had at least a college degree were more likely to support the research than those with a high school degree, 74% to 67% for embryonic stem cell research, and 79% to 68% for therapeutic cloning. Both of these percentages were after descriptions of the research were read. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3%, and was conducted for CAMR by the Opinion Research Corporation.

The Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research (CAMR), a non-partisan non-profit, is comprised of nationally-recognized patient organizations, universities, scientific societies, foundations, and individuals with life-threatening illnesses and disorders, advocating for the advancement of breakthrough research and technologies in regenerative medicine – including stem cell research and somatic cell nuclear transfer – in order to cure disease and alleviate suffering. For more information on CAMR, visit the website: