A Liquid Nitrogen bank containing suspended stem cells. (Photo: Elena Pavlovich)
California’s multibillion-dollar, cell and gene therapy program has a special spot in the pantheon of the hundreds of government departments in the Golden State. It is immune from the normal oversight of the governor and state lawmakers. Its cash — now set at $5.5 billion over the next decade — flows freely and directly to the stem cell agency with no inconvenient meddling by elected officials.
A researcher examines meat cultured in laboratory conditions from stem cells. (Photo: Alex_Traksel, via Shutterstock)
California’s $12 billion stem cell agency needs to do better in several critical areas, ranging from planning for the replacement of its current chair to handling information that is key to its operations as well as the tracking of potential sources of royalties. That’s according to that latest performance audit of the 17-year-old agency.