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President Obama Announces Key Bioethical Commission Appointees

Washington, D.C. (Apr 7) – "Appointments to the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues have been announced by the Obama administration. Major roles have been extended to a wide range of individuals, with the intention of addressing potential bioethical issues through advancements in biomedicine and 'related areas of science and technology.' The Commission for the Study of Bioethical plays a key role in keeping the President informed about these issues.

President Obama stated, 'I am grateful that these impressive individuals have decided to dedicate their talent and experience to this important Commission. I look forward to their recommendations in the coming months and years.'

The Commission appointees are:

Lonnie Ali, an outspoken advocate working to raise awareness of Parkinson’s disease as well as increase funding for research.

Anita L. Allen, Henry R. Silverman Professor of Law and Professor of Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. She also serves as Deputy Dean for Academic Affairs, and is Senior Fellow in the Bioethics Department, School of Medicine.

Barbara Atkinson, Executive Vice Chancellor of the University of Kansas Medical Center. She concurrently serves as the Executive Dean of the University of Kansas School of Medicine since 2002.

Nita A. Farahany, Associate Professor of Law and Philosophy at Vanderbilt University.

Dr. Alexander Garza, Assistant Secretary for Health Affairs and Chief Medical Officer for the Department of Homeland Security. His background includes an impressive career in medicine and public health issues in both civilian and military roles, specializing in emergency medicine.

Christine Grady, Acting Chief of the Department of Bioethics at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center. She focuses on research subject recruitment, incentives, vulnerability, and international research ethics.

Stephen L. Hauser, M.D., Robert A. Fishman Distinguished Professor and Chair of the Department of Neurology at the University of California – San Francisco.

Dr. Raju Kucherlapati, Ph.D., Paul C. Cabot Professor in the Harvard Medical School Department of Genetics, and Department of Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital Professor.

Dr. Nelson Michael, Director of the Division of Retrovirology at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and the Director, U.S. Military HIV Research program (MHRP).

Dr. Daniel Sulmasy, a Franciscan Friar, holds the Kilbride-Clinton Chair in Medicine and Ethics in the Department of Medicine and Divinity School and is associate director of the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics at the University of Chicago.

The objective of the Commission is to identify and promote policies and practices thus ensuring scientific research, technological innovations, and health care delivery are 'conducted in an ethically responsible manner.'

The current Chair is held by Amy Gutmann. James Wagner is Vice-Chair."

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