Crunch Time for Paralysis Cure@

If you want California spinal cord injury research for cure to move forward, (as is the purpose of Assembly Bill 190, Wieckowski, D-Fremont) there are some Legislative Aides who need to hear from you!

Write to the aide—the member’s name follows. Remember, just a sentence or two is all that is needed! If you want ideas, take a look at the latest I put together, at the bottom. If you only have time to do one, make it the top, aide for the chairman, Felipe Fuentes, and the vice-chair, Diane Harkey for chair Felipe Fuentes for vice-chair Diane L. Harkey  for Assembleman Steven Bradford for Bob Blumenfeld for Mike Davis for Mike Gatto  for Nora Campos  for Assembly majority leader Charles Calderon for Donald P. Wagner for Isadore Hall for Ricardo Lara for Chris Norby for Jim Nielsen for Tim Donnely for Jose Solorio for Jerry Hill for Holly Mitchell

Dear ________:

This Friday, your leader will be voting on AB 190 (Wieckowski, D-Fremont) in Appropriations. Here are ten reasons to vote yes—and 47 key groups and supporters.

1. With zero cost to taxpayers, AB 190 will fund California’s highly successful Roman Reed Spinal Cord Injury Research Act of 1999, named after a paralyzed Californian.

2. AB 190 will impose a $3 penalty on all moving traffic violations. As car crash is a major (46%) cause of spinal cord injury, violators should help solve the problem they inflict on others.

4. Operated by the University of California system, the program already has its core lab and headquarters set up at the Reeve-Irvine Research Institute, UC Irvine.

5. California will continue to profit financially. A “money magnet”, the Act attracted $64 million in new revenues from the National Institutes of Health and other out-of-state sources.

6. The biomedical industry, mainstay of the California economy, also benefits; biomed companies (like California Stem Cells, Inc.) spring from successful scientists’ advances.

7. Although “Roman’s Law” funded the first use of President Bush’s approved stem cell lines, leading to Geron’s historic human trials, AB 190 does not focus on stem cells, and has not funded any such research since 2008. Instead, we concentrate on the “everything else” that is needed for cure: including ways to turn on the body’s natural repair engines, and turn off the “inhibitors” of cure; to ease life-threatening blood-pressure changes; diminish the “secondary injury” that often doubles the damage to the spine; build biological “bridges” for new nerves to grow across; to diminish chronic pain, restore bowel and bladder control, and much more.

8. In 175 peer-reviewed publications, Roman’s law has advanced the field of neurology, with “carry-over” impact on other conditions, including ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease), Spinal Muscular Atrophy, Traumatic Brain Injury, Multiple Sclerosis—indeed, one treatment developed for Spinal Cord Injury is now in human trials for Irritable Bowel Syndrome!

9. Practical applications range from small to staggering: a new Petri dish, (patent pending) which sorts cells by electrical potential; a helmet-glove device to return the power of grip to frozen fingers; robotic “boots” to lower rehabilitation costs; a way to harness brainwaves, so a completely paralyzed person can operate a computer by thought alone; even a new paralysis “model”, humanely designed so a monkey would have just one finger paralyzed.

10.  The problem AB 190 addresses is enormous. An estimated 5.6 million Americans suffer paralysis today: California has roughly 650,000 paralyzed individuals. The financial costs are staggering.  New paralysis sufferers face bills averaging $775,000 in the first year alone, and are an immense and continual drain on Medi-Cal and Medicare. The agony of individuals and the stress on their families cannot be calculated.

For more information, contact: Jeff Barbosa: (916) 319-2020

ENDORSERS OF AB 190 (in alphabetical order)

Letters of support for AB 190 have poured in from across America and around the world. The men and women who put their good names behind AB 190 read like a Who’s Who of Science. From Paul Berg, winner of  the Nobel Prize for DNA research, to Shinya Yamanaka who invented what may be the replacement for embryonic stem cells, those who understand spinal cord injury are backing California.

Please take a moment and glance through this amazing partial list.

  1. Paul Berg (Nobel Prize winner for DNA research) Stanford University School of Medicine
  2. Jeffrey A. Bluestone, Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost, UC San Francisco
  3. Rayilyn Brown, President, Arizona Chapter National Parkinson Foundation
  4. Nancy Brackett, Ph.D., U of Miami School of Medicine
  5. Lorraine Chammah, President, Texans for Advancement of Medical Research
  6. Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, Peter T. Wilderotter, President & CEO
  7. California Healthcare Institute (representing more than 100 biomedical corporations)
  8. Susan Chandler, Treasurer, California Disability Rights Organization
  9. Stemcyte, President Calvin Cole
  10. California Chiropractic Association, Kassie Donoghue, DC, Government Affairs Chair
  11. W. Dalton Dietrich, Ph.D., Miami Project to Cure Paralysis
  12. John Dutra, (D-Fremont, retired)Author, Roman Reed Spinal Cord Injury Research Act of 1999
  13. V. Reggie Edgerton, UCLA Professor, Brain Research Institute
  14. Brooke Ellison(Christopher Reeve’s last project was directing a movie about Brooke)
  15. Lucy Fisher and Doug Wick of Red Wagon Films, Sony Pictures
  16. Jeannie Fontana. CEO SALSa, Inc. Solutions for ALS
  17. Eric Fingerhut, Chancellor, University System of Ohio
  18. University of California, Karen French, Associate Director, Legislative Affair
  19. Leeza Gibbons, Leeza’s Place (Alzheimer’s)
  20. Lawrence Goldstein, Director, UCSD Stem Cell Program
  21. Hans Keirstead,  Chair, Scientific Advisory Board, California Stem Cell, Inc.
  22. Stephanie Kolakowsky, Director Rehabilitation Research, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center
  23. Suzy Kim, Medical Director, Spinal Cord Injury Acute Care UCI Medical Center
  24. Bob Klein, Founder,  Proposition 71, Californians for Stem Cell Research and Cures Initiative
  25. Dena Ladd, Executive Director, Missouri Coalition for Lifesaving Cures
  26. Sherry Lansing, winner of the Academy Award Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award
  27. Stem Cells Inc., Martin McGlynn, President & CEO
  28. Karen Miner, Chair, Research for Cure
  29. Ed Monuki, Associate Professor, UC Irvine (inventor new cell-sorting machine)
  30. Rania Nasis, General Manager, CA Stem Cell, Inc.
  31. Richard Patterson, M.D., Santa Clara Valley Medical Center
  32. Renee A Reijo Pera, Director of Reproductive and Stem Cell Biology Division, Stanford
  33. Dan Perry, President, CEO, Alliance for Aging Research, Washington, DC
  34. Claire Pomeroy, Chief Executive Officer, UC Davis Health Department
  35. Brock Reeve, Executive Director, Harvard Stem Cell Institute
  36. Bill Remak, Chairman, California Hepatitis Task Force
  37. Duane Roth, CEO, CONNECT
  38. Rose Marie Salerno, VA Palo Alto Health Care System
  39. Lori Sames, Executive Director, Hannah’s Hope Fund
  40. Bernie Siegel, founder and chair: Stem Cell Action Coalition (72 groups)
  41. Marilyn Smith, Executive Director, Unite 2 Fight Paralysis
  42. Michael Sofroniew, Professor, UCLA
  43. Jim Bennett, Spinal Cord Injury Research Foundation, Rutgers University, New Jersey
  44. Shinya Yamanaka, Ph.D   Director, Center for iPS Cell Research, Kyoto University, Japan
  45. Texans for Stem Cell Research, David L. Bales, founder
  46. Fanyi Zheng, Associate Director, Shanghai Stem Cell Institute, Jiao Tong University, China
  47. Jerry Zucker (movie director, Ghost, Airplane, Naked Gun) Founding member, CURESNOW.

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