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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Three Times a Woman: A Gendered Economy of Stem Cell Innovation


In 2004, Californians passed Proposition 71, a statute establishing stem cell research as a constitutional right. Prop 71 authorized bond sales to fund stem cell research in California, and created the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) to award grants and regulate the research. The state’s General Fund provided initial startup funding, to be repaid later with proceeds from bond sales. In her recent Life (Un)Ltd talk, Charis Thompson told the curious story of Prop 71, and how women came to be disproportionately enrolled in its passage and the “bio-curial” economy that resulted from it.

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