The conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch obtained 198 pages of records and communications from the federal government that details how the U.S. Food and Drug Administration procured human fetal tissue from aborted babies for research with "humanized mice."
The records were handed over after the group filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services seeking communications and other related documents between Advanced Bioscience Resources, a provider of organs and other human fetal tissue harvested from aborted babies, and the FDA.
"After successfully opposing the FDA's redaction of certain information from its records, a federal court ordered HHS to release additional information about its purchases of organs harvested from aborted human fetuses – including 'line item prices,' or the price per organ the government paid to ABR," Judicial Watch said. "The court also found 'there is reason to question' whether the transactions violate federal law barring the sale of fetal organs. Documents previously uncovered in this lawsuit show that the federal government demanded the purchased fetal organs be 'fresh and never frozen.')."
Most of the released records are emails and attachments from Perrin Larton, a procurement manager for Advanced Bioscience Resources, and FDA research veterinary medical officer Kristina Howard.
The emails were sent between 2013 and 2018, the year President Donald Trump's administration canceled the FDA's contracts with ABR. The Trump administration in 2019 banned federal funding for research that used human fetal tissue from aborted babies, but in April the Biden administration reversed Trump's policy.
The emails detail cost estimates, purchase orders, kinds of fetal parts purchased (fetal livers, thymuses), and related matters.
"The records include an FDA generated contract with ABR, based on a 'requisition' it issued on July 27, 2012, for $12,000 worth of 'tissue procurement for humanized mice,' indicates the requisition was for a 'non-competitive award.' Although the initial award was for $12,000, the total estimated amount of funds allocated for the requisition was $60,000," Judicial Watch reported.
One email described ABR as "the only company in the U.S. capable of supplying tissues suitable for HM research."
"No other company or organization is capable of fulfilling the need," the FDA wrote.
Another email describes how mice are "humanized" with fetal tissue:
The HM [humanized mice] are created by surgical implantations of human tissue into mice that have multiple genetic mutations that block the development of the mouse immune system at a very early stage. The absence of the mouse immune system allows the human tissues to grow and develop into functional human tissues ... In order for the humanization to proceed correctly we need to obtain fetal tissue with a specific set of specialized characteristics.
"Chopping up aborted human beings for their organs and tissue is a moral and legal outrage," Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said. "This issue should be front and center in any debate about America's barbaric abortion industry."