Renowned Cell Biologist: Support HB 135

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 19, 2015
Contact: Mallory Quigley, mquigley@sba-list.org, 202-223-8073

CLI Research Director Will Addresses Harm Disability Discrimination Abortions

COLUMBUS, OH – This afternoon Dr. David Prentice, Vice President and Research Director of the Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI), will testify before the Ohio House Committee on Community and Family Advancement in support of HB 135, the Down Syndrome Non-Discrimination Act. This legislation would stop abortions for the purpose of eliminating children with Down syndrome. The Charlotte Lozier Institute is the research and education arm of the national pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List.

Dr. Prentice has over three decades of experience in life sciences including stem cells, cloning, cell biology, genetics, biotechnology, bioethics, as well as life-related research and policymaking. Prentice is an Adjunct Professor of Molecular Genetics at the John Paul II Institute at the Catholic University of America and is a founding member of Do No Harm: The Coalition of Americans for Research Ethics.

**Media Availability: Dr. Prentice will be available for interviews before testifying.**

To arrange, please email mquigley@sba-list.org 

Proponent testimony will take place at 4 PM ET in Room 114. Below are excerpts from Dr. Prentice’s testimony:

Prentice calls the mass abortion of babies with Down syndrome a “modern version of eugenic selection,” citing studies across several countries:

“In France, which keeps excellent records on prenatal screening as a matter of public policy, Bradford cites a 96% rate of abortion for those diagnosed in the womb with Down’s.  

“In the U.K., an earlier study found a 92% abortion rate for children diagnosed in the womb with Down syndrome, while a 2012 study found that 100% of those prenatally diagnosed with Down syndrome were aborted.  

“In the U.S., a 1999 study found almost 87% of those diagnosed with Down syndrome in the womb were aborted.”

Prentice also points to studies contradicting modern rationale for choosing abortion in cases of Down Syndrome:

Contrast the prevalent attitude about Down syndrome that leads to a lethal diagnosis, with the recent facts about increased life span, health, learning, and especially satisfaction for those with Down syndrome and their families.  A recent study by Skotko et al. found that 99% of people with Down syndrome are happy with their lives, 99% of parents said they love their child with Down syndrome, and 97% of brothers/sisters, ages 9-11, said they love their sibling.

Medical science has also improved significantly not only in terms of surgeries to alleviate some of the physical problems associated with Down syndrome, but also in potential pharmaceutical treatments.  Bradford notes several clinical trials, all begun within the last five years, with drugs that are hoped will improve cognition for individuals affected by this condition.

Charlotte Lozier Institute was launched in 2011 as the education and research arm of Susan B. Anthony List.  CLI is a hub for research and public policy analysis on some of the most pressing issues facing the United States and nations around the world. The Institute is named for a feminist physician known for her commitment to the sanctity of human life and equal career and educational opportunities for women.

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