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Experiments on Intact Live Fetuses and the Connection to Infant Formula

August 5, AD2015

baby, prolife, pro-life, family, marriage

Recently the investigative journalism conducted by David Daleiden who started the Center for Medical Progress has provided a raw look into the minds of the people involved in the “human capital” abortion industry. As the videos continue to come out and lawsuits are filed threatening to suppress free speech and journalism, perhaps this is a good time to look more broadly at the sale and use of aborted fetuses in scientific research.

One does not need to conduct an undercover investigation to discover “human capital.” The facts are in the academic record, and they offer cold hard evidence that what Daleiden is revealing is not only true, but spans far, deep, and wide across time and locale.

The following information is just one example pieced together to demonstrate how ingrained this type of research is in the global scientific and industrial communities. Scientists are expected to provide meticulous accounts of their work for the sake of reproducibility and posterity. The language is thus very technical. Knowing how to read scientific literature means knowing how to decipher the scientific language. Please note: Because of the detail, however, the information in this case is also disturbing.

Let’s step through the facts.

Fetuses Presented a Special Test Case

In 1972, Pediatric Research journal published a paper submitted by researchers from the Department of Pediatric Research at New York State and Mount Sinai School of Medicine of the City University of New York in collaboration with a researcher from the Departments of Medical Chemistry and Obstetrics and Gynecology of the University of Helsinki in Finland. The paper was titled, “Development of Mammalian Sulfur Metabolism: Absence of Cystathionase in Human Fetal Tissues.” The fact that they used fetuses is stated right in the title. The researchers “examined the development of the transsulfuration pathway in 58 human fetuses obtained at therapeutic abortion during approximately the 2nd-6th month of gestation” as well as in premature and full term infants who died shortly after birth. They were trying to determine whether cysteine is an essential amino acid in “immature humans,” so they needed to analyze kidneys and brains at different developmental stages.

The fetuses presented a special test case. Since the fetuses were still alive at the beginning of the experiment in their mothers’ wombs, “in vivo” experiments were possible. This phrase “in vivo” is Latin and means “within the living.” With already deceased specimens, they could only measure the presence of amino acids after death. This type of analysis is an “in vitro” (in the glass, think in vitro fertilization) procedure. With the still-living fetuses, they could actually inject a known amount of amino acids, S-L-methionine and S-L-cysteine, “in vivo” into a living fetus and test how much of these substances were incorporated into fetal organs via the biological machinery of life over a set amount of time. The researchers therefore conducted the “in vivo” experiments by surgically cutting open the uterus of the mother, lifting out the living fetus with the umbilical cord still attached, and injecting the amino acids into the umbilical vein.

Then they waited 10 minutes with the heart still beating and the fetus still moving to allow the body to distribute and metabolize the amino acids. After 10 minutes, they cut the umbilical cord, dissected the brain and liver from the body of the fetus, and dropped the organs into liquid nitrogen to await analysis.

Here is the relevant description from the Methods and Materials section:

For “in vivo” experiments, each fetus immediately after removal from the uterus was injected with approximately 100 uCi of either 35S-L-methionine (specific activity 515 mCi/mmole) or 35S-L-cysteine (specific activity 31.3 mCi/mmole) contained in 0.5 ml of a 0.9% solution of NaCl at pH 7.0. In some experiments, unlabeled cysteine (2.0 /xmoles L-cysteine in 0.2 ml 0.9% NaCl, pH 7.0) as well as 35S-L-methionine were injected. All injections were made into the umbilical vein through a short Teflon catheter which was then rinsed with 0.2 ml 0.9% NaCl; the whole cord was clamped on the fetal side of the point of entry of the catheter to prevent blood loss during the experiment. After 10 min (elsewhere in the paper, “in all cases the heart continued to beat during the 10-min period and spontaneous movement was seen”), the cord was severed close to the fetus, and as much blood as possible was collected into a tube which contained heparin as anticoagulant. The fetal organs were quickly removed and dropped into liquid nitrogen.

The research was funded by the Lalor Foundation in Boston, Massachusetts, the New York State Department of Mental Hygiene, and the Association for Aid of Crippled Children also in New York. The abortions appear to have been done at the Central University Hospital and Borja Womens Hospital in Helsinki, Finland because an end note offers thanks to the staffs there. A shorter communication of this work was also published in Science journal, “Absence of Cystathionase in Human Fetal Liver: Is Cystine Essential?Science journal is arguably the most prestigious journal to have your work published in because it is not specialized in any one area and only publishes the best work across all scientific disciplines.

The Mothers and Hysterotomies

Among the details in the paper was the anesthesia procedure for the women. “Preoperative medications included Pethidine, 50-75 mg; Phenergan, 25 mg; and atropine, 0.5-0.8 mg intramuscularly. Anaesthesia was induced with 250-440 mg Pentothal intravenously and was maintained with N2O2.”

Not all the details regarding the women were recorded though. According to the Pediatric Research paper, the “mothers” (the authors called them “mothers”) were in good health but sought abortion for “social or psychological reasons.” The “mothers” apparently agreed to undergo “hysterotomies,” which seems odd. A hysterotomy is a surgery where an incision is made in the uterus, usually done for Cesarean birth or fetal surgery. A hysterotomy is a much more invasive procedure than a suction-aspiration procedure, which was certainly available in the 1970’s. Safe abortions (for the mother) are ones that reduce the risk of perforating the uterus as much as possible and reduce the risk of infection. It does not make sense to unnecessarily cut open the uterus and leave it open for an extended period of time if the safety of the mother is the first concern.

The research paper did not mention whether the mothers gave consent or were informed of the procedure. One might wonder if the mothers were told that, while they were unconscious with their abdomens laid open, their unwanted children were used as living biological machines in the only 10 minutes they would live outside the womb. It is hard to imagine that any woman would agree to such an experiment regardless of how much she did not want to be pregnant or raise a child.

Fetuses And Infant Formula

The goal of this 1972 paper was to demonstrate that cysteine is an essential amino acid in human fetuses and in infants for some time after birth. The end use of this work was to provide information about feeding newborns. In the conclusion, the authors noted that “infants of low birth weight who are fed a formula with the same quality of protein as that in human milk should grow as well.” (Proteins are large biomolecules made of long chains of amino acids.) The experiment was part of a broader set of experiments to understand the kind of protein newborns need to be fed in milk formulas. By understanding the differences in how fetuses process amino acids compared to infants and children, the researchers sought to better design infant formula especially for prematurely born infants.

The two researchers from the New York, John A. Sturman and Gerald E. Gaull, continued their work in the coming years using fetal brains, sometimes whole. Their work was funded, in part, by the National Institute of Health Clinical Genetics Grant and the New York State Department of Mental Hygiene. In 1974, they published “Polyamine Biosynthesis in Human Fetal Liver and Brain” in Pediatric Research. In that study they used many of the same samples used in the previous study. Their interests were neurological.

The Finnish researcher who was interested in infant nutrition, Niels C. R. Räihä, published “Phenylalanine Hydoxylase in Human Liver during Development” in 1973 using the livers of 18 human fetuses from 2nd-6th month of gestation. Räihä continued his work until 1985, collaborating with 55 other co-authors from around the world and publishing some 41 papers, according to internet sources.

In 1993, Räihä served as Editor of the proceedings from the Nestlé Nutrition Workshop Series held that year in South Africa by the Nestlé Corporation. The collection of chapters, which was published in 1994 and titled Protein Metabolism During Infancy (Nestle Nutrition Workshop Series: Pediatric Program), reviewed the “protein requirements of low-birthweight, very-low-birthweight, and small-for-gestational-age infants and the essential amino acid requirements of infants with inborn errors of metabolism.” The book also focused on the quality of protein in human milk and formulas, the digestibility and absorption of protein in infants, and the role of essential and nonessential amino acids in neonatal nutrition. Hence, the experimental procedures describe above have a connection to the Nestlé Corporation and development of infant formula.

Fetuses: The Value Chain Is Much Larger

If the language of the Planned Parenthood and biotech executives discussing the demand for fetal body parts over wine and salad for lunch is disgusting, perhaps one will find the experimental methods tied to the history of the development of infant formula equally, if not more so, disgusting. These facts have been in the academic record for over 40 years. Was there no outcry? No controversy? What? Did people just trust the academics blindly? I do not know. A million questions can be asked about why anyone thought this kind of research was remotely acceptable. Yet, here we are in 2015 in shock as if all of this behavior began overnight, speculating about whether it is all really true or not. It is true. Those “in vivo” experimental procedures are not speculation, indication, or accusation. They are as true as if the researchers confessed the activities to the public in their own handwriting—because they did.

If the published works in refereed journals are to be believed, then abortion clinics have indeed provided whole live fetuses for research, even live ones handed over to be used, killed, and dissected as a part of an experiment that feeds an industry. Apparently for decades the use of fetal material has been a research tactic that is 1) considered ethical and legal, 2) coordinated across continents if necessary, 3) funded by governments and private foundations, 4) demanded by industry, and 5) applauded by the scientific community. Planned Parenthood could shut down completely tomorrow, but the use of aborted fetuses and fetal body parts will not stop.

The value-chain, so to speak, is much longer and affects more aspects of modern life than any of us may yet realize, and Planned Parenthood is but one link. Again, this is only one example. There is more. So while the Center for Medical Progress continues to expose Planned Parenthood’s involvement, I will continue to back it up by exposing what is in the scientific literature.

Editorial Note:  Dr. Stacy A. Trasancos, PhD is solely responsible for the accuracy of the facts in this essay. If you believe anything is in error based upon her reading of the publicly available literature, please email her here. Dr. Trasancos is available for interviews.

Photography: See our Photographers page.

About the Author:

Stacy Trasancos has a PhD in Chemistry from Penn State University and a MA in Dogmatic Theology from Holy Apostles College and Seminary, is a chemistry and physics instructor for Kolbe Academy, adjunct professor at Holy Apostles, and author of Science Was Born of Christianity: The Teaching of Fr. Stanley L. Jaki. Most of her time is devoted to raising her youngest five children, and worrying about her two oldest, with her husband in a 100-year old restored mountain lodge in the Adirondack mountains. Interact with her on Facebook or Twitter. Visit her website.

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  • jamey brown

    I switched from Nestlé’s Tasters’ Choice coffee after reading this and, believe or not, the pains in my stomach stopped too. It just sounds…Providential.

  • Mrs. Harris

    Thank you Stacy. Please continue to look into this. We need to know as much as possible. God bless you for your work.

  • RooforLife

    I knew Nestle used HEK239 stemcells from aborted embryos for research but not this. SICK!

  • Gail Finke

    This is so horrible I can’t even believe it’s true. It’s as if Kevorkian had gotten his way…

  • sgla

    Stacy – another disturbing paper, this time from the ’80s, looking at neurotransmitters in the human fetal brain (Indoleamine and catecholamine concentrations in the mid-term human fetal brain, doi:10.1016/0361-9230(83)90110-7). I found the following particularly disturbing: “Human fetuses were collected immediately after their removal from the uterus by hysterotomy (performed for gynecosocial reasons) under general anaesthesia. They were packed in ice and brought to the Institute of Physiology.”

    No mention if the children were dead when they were “packed in ice.”

    • August M

      I remember seeing a photo of Dr Robert J White who was doing experiments on a live late term human fetus suspended in a large container filled with fluid. The poor fetus had some wires attached. And White looked on in amusement. Later in the 1970’s White did his infamous and doomed to fail head transplant on a monkey.

  • dwarf

    Wow. Just wow. Really, people? WHY?!?!

  • Juana Oner

    This is so disgusting that I can hardly take it. It reads like the accounts of Nazi experiments. Imagine what might be going on at the local university that we don’t know about. God help us all. There isn’t any excuse for that kind of thing. None. No cure, no need, nothing excuses this. You know, if anyone can hear these kinds of things, and see those PP videos, and still believe that we’re all just born good and don’t need a savior, that person is out of his mind.

  • ThirstforTruth

    One wonders, with the practice of “death with dignity” ( euthanasia) gaining approval, how long
    before scientific experiments on the elderly will commence. Of course, in the interest of progress
    in health issues one could make the case. Almost makes one hope Iran does get the nuclear bomb and blow us all to smithereens before.
    Thanks Dr Trasancos for enlightening us to the further horrors of this modern, god-less age we life in. Truly one has to be brave or nuts to live in this new world.

  • Mark_Trail

    Reading this RhRealityCheck article made me think of this article. Are university labs getting fetal parts and making any headway in AIDS cures, as they claim? I highly doubt that there are any advances that come from fetal cadaver parts because babies and adults are so different in their chemistry, but I’m no scientist. Are labs hiding the truth,and are they using adult stem cells and saying the cures come from fetal cadaver parts instead? It would make sense, because everyone seems to be lying about everything these days, and once money starts pouring in from the Feds and from the Rockefeller-types, the momentum to keep the “ovens burning” (so to speak), seems to be the name of the game these days, and lies covering more lies is “perfectly normal.”
    http://rhrealitycheck.org/article/2015/08/06/university-caves-anti-choice-pressure-suspends-fetal-tissue-acquisition-vendors/

    • August M

      If one tries to talk any sense on “rhrealitycheck” you will be attacked by lying abusive and nonsensical pro-aborts and then they will report and flag you and accuse you of being one of their supposed enemies. Then you will be blocked and all your comments will be wiped by their pc pro-abort censor. So typical! And then ignorance rules again. Keep up the good fight people and expose all the lies and educate the public.

    • guest

      Dear Mark, yes, we are being deceived (in general, I did not read the RH article) on the “adult stem cell” issue, as any parts/cells of a child after 8 weeks gestation is now called “adult stem cells.”

      Please see:http://www.marymeetsdolly.com/blog/index.php?/archives/1432-Stem-Cell-Wars-Arent-Over-How-Donated-Aborted-Baby-Parts-Are-Being-Used.html
      Excerpts:

      “But the stem-cell wars are far from over. There is a third designation of stem cells that is little known but is gaining momentum: the fetal stem cell. Human beings are called embryos for the first eight weeks after fertilization. After that, we enter the fetal stage, which is from nine weeks post-fertilization until birth. Fetal stem cells are stem cells harvested during the fetal stage of development.

      Fetal stem cells, often procured from elective abortions, are disingenuously classified as “adult” stem cells simply because they do not come from embryos. Needless to say, this creates great confusion, even causing pro-lifers to tout “adult” stem-cell successes when the stem cells originally came from an aborted fetus.

    • Mark_Trail

      Thanks for your reply. I will pass this information along.

  • Brimstone

    I do pray for Divine Retribution NOW. Yep, I might be swept up too in that cleansing hellfire, but this horrific evil must CEASE!

    Are you ready to meet your Maker?

    • Ixnay, Brimstone. After many hundreds of millions of lives lost through abortion, the only retribution that could be just would be a global nuclear war or maybe a pandemic of some antibiotic-resistant plague.

      Better strategy: pray for God’s mercy! Our only hope.

  • There were terminal experiments in Scandinavia using severed heads of babies from abortion, supported in part by March of Dimes. I remember Randy Engel publicizing this 25 years ago or so. I looked up the journal articles. Gruesome.

  • Seamrog

    Of all the political scandals, and Church scandals, and marriage scandals and so on, I cannot wrap my arms and my heart around this.

    These videos and this information have effected me in a way that I have not encountered before, and I find myself over the last week or so in a hazy fog – a terribly sad and depressing fog of grey.

    I am having a hard time accepting that this is our reality – that my neighbors, my brothers and sisters and my friends can see this and not grab pitchforks, much less support it, and celebrate it.

    I cannot fathom that any human alive could perform the experiments you are describing here, but I have seen some clips of those videos and see men and women talking about the tiny limbs and heads and organs of defenseless innocents as if they were groceries or shoes or detergents.

    At what point does our incredulity turn to rage?

    Maranatha.

  • Thank you, Stacy. May God reward you.

  • jamey brown

    What a gift that at this perfect time in history we have a writer, who has a Ph.D. in Chemistry and a M.A. in Dogmatic Theology, so eloquently speaking out. I just can’t help thinking that this is a pure act of Providence. With the videos and articles like this we have critically wounded the Monster, now let’s bring him down. Each of us can do our part, in our own way.

  • Brenda from Flatbush

    Low numbers, dated studies, premature to go wild trying to leverage this–at least that’s my takeaway as a medical writer on a quick read (will dig deeper when I have time). Don’t risk getting shot down by trying for claims that won’t hold up (like a Nestle connection relevant to today)–it damages credibility and, after the PP fiasco, we don’t need it.

    • Brenda you are probably right about this paper. But, it made me think of human experiments that took place longer ago that were not public until after WW2. We still today cringe at the medical use of concentration camp prisoners, young children among them, by medical doctors. Any story like this seems to be timeless.

    • Jeff_McLeod

      Howard, I thought the very same thing. I read through some documents from the 1980s about the use of concentration camp data on science involving how the human body reacts to freezing, or exposure to poison gas. The nazis had frozen many prisoners to death, and had meticulously documented the death process, sometimes controlling for factors by using identical twins.

      In the 1980s, the head of the EPA was being asked by his scientists to use the nazi data to examine the effect of toxic gas on human beings. He refused, saying that the USA refuses to admit court evidence that is obtained illegally, and consequently ought not admit the data derived from immoral acts under the guise of science. The same principle holds, a fortiori for harvesting body parts.

      I agree with you that Brenda is probably right. We live in a world where the majority of educated adults do not believe there is a fixed truth, or if they do believe it, they have no idea on what authority that truth is founded other than some vague “social contract” fairy tale.

    • I was very surprised at the reaction to the videos. If people didn’t connect the legal dots they did react to the lack of respect for “potential” life. Sort of like respect for the body of an adult that has died. Strange reaction for people who claim loudly that a fetus is not a person. I think this approach can be used to place otherwise rejected thoughts into a mind so they can simmer.

    • Brenda, do that digging. It will lead you on a journey back almost 100 years to eugenicists here in the USA and in Germany just after WW I. Not a happy task, but something it is important to understand. I began educating myself about it about 25 years ago — there is a lot to learn.

  • I’ll share this as widely as I can.

  • Patti Maguire Armstrong

    The undercover videos are revealing far more than just the illegal sale of aborted babies body parts. Everyone should be doing all that they can to fight against this. We have been asleep at the wheel for too long, letting just a small percent of prolifers fight this. Thanks, Stacy, for revealing just another sickening reason that we must do our part to protect life.

  • Felix Whelan

    This is an important series of articles you’re posting, Stacy. Thank you for sharing the benefit of your expertise in this area.

  • deltaflute

    I think that I read somewhere that hysterotomies were a lot more common (compared to today) in the 1970s so my guess is that the women did sign on for them. Wikipedia states that US discouraged them because of the high mortality rate for women (we all know the babies died). Makes one wonder if they knew about the babies being brought out alive to experiment on or if it was like a Planned Parenthood thing. Meaning they were donating what they thought was a “clump of cells” for science not knowing exactly what was going on. Still *shudders*

  • John Darrouzet

    Excellent ! Great find. Well-written. Targeted analysis. Stunning! Absolutely stunning! Will share widely. Thanks for all you are doing for our community.

  • Sick. Sick and wrong. What ever happened to ethical standards in science?

    • After the Medical Trial in Nuremberg after WW II, the medical community got really serious about the idea of consent. The Nazis had, among other abominations, conducted terminal experiments on prisoners in Dachau and elsewhere, and those terminal experiments which result in the death of the patient, were the offense that sent a lot of those criminals to trial. The judges found that it was not legally possible to give consent to an experiment that results in your own death. So, as a result, the idea of informed consent became a huge ethical emphasis, and we see the results of that today in the big paperwork required before accepting medical treatments. Except abortion and contraception.