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Science  21 Apr 2006:
Vol. 312, Issue 5772, pp. 363
DOI: 10.1126/science.312.5772.363d

FREEDOM FROM GOVERNMENT. The Bush Administration's restrictions on funding research using human embryonic stem (ES) cells have driven a prominent National Institutes of Health (NIH) researcher into the private sector. Mahendra Rao, who works with ES cells at the National Institute on Aging in Bethesda, Maryland, has been hired by Invitrogen, a biotech company in Carlsbad, California.

“It was clear that the policy was unlikely to change in the next 2 to 3 years, and hence I decided that I needed to move,” says Rao. He says his replacement will probably be someone who works on adult tissue.

Sean Tipton of the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research in Washington, D.C., says Rao's departure shows “what the results of Bush's restrictive policies are going to be. Good scientists are not going to stay at NIH or even perhaps stay in the country.”

At Invitrogen, Rao plans to work on characterization of new ES cell lines not approved by the Administration.

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