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April 15, 2003

PENN Bioethicist Named to National Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture

Oxford Foundation Commits Gift to Islet Isolation Facility

(Philadelphia, PA) -- David C. Magnus, PhD, Assistant Professor in the Department of Medical Ethics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, has been named by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Ann M. Veneman to a new Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture. Magnus also serves as the Graduate Studies in Bioethics Director at PENN.

The 18-person Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture is charged with examining the long-term impacts of biotechnology on the U.S. food and agriculture system and providing guidance to the USDA on pressing individual issues related to the application of biotechnology in agriculture. Appointees will serve one- or two-year terms; and may be reappointed to serve up to six years. The Committee's membership includes leaders in biotechnology, food and seed industries, farmers, environmental and consumer organizations, academia, international plant research centers, and produce shippers and traders.

"I am pleased to serve on this committee. The complexity of the ethical, social, and scientific issues associated with biotechnology and agriculture make it imperative that thoughtful, careful reflection should guide our deliberations," states Magnus.

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