May 2008: Stem Cell & Cloning Research

Scientists Turn Ethical iPSC "Embryonic-Like" Stem Cells Into Heart & Blood Cells 'Dolly the Sheep' Cloner Eyeing Joint Study with iPS Cell Inventor World's First Cloned Dog Will Participate in First Breeding NEW! Genetically Altered Embryo Points to Human Cloning Concerns… SCIENTISTS TURN ETHICAL iPSCs INTO HEART & BLOOD CELLS. Stem cell researchers continue to make progress with induced pluripotent stem cells or iPS cells, which are embryonic-like stem cells that don't require the destruction of human life to obtain. After their discovery last year, pro-life groups hailed the cells as an ethical alternative to embryonic stem cell research. The UCLA researchers that have advanced the use of the iPS cells before were able progress further and grow functioning heart and blood cells. They said the success is the first time iPS cells have been differentiated into the three types of cardiovascular cells needed to repair heart and blood vessels. Dr. Robb MacLellan, the senior author of the study, published in the May 2008 edition of the medical journal Stem Cells, says the discovery could one day lead to clinical trials of new treatments for people who suffer heart attacks, have atherosclerosis or are in heart failure. He also said the ethical cells don't present the same problems as the use of embryonic stem cells — that have issues with growing tumors and immune systems rejecting them. “I believe iPS cells address many of the shortcomings of human embryonic stem cells and are the future of regenerative medicine,” he said. “I’m hoping that these scientific findings are the first step towards one day developing new therapies that I can...

February 2008: Stem Cell Research

British House of Lords Allows Human-Animal Cloning, Passes Embryo Bill Scientists Use Female Adult Stem Cells to Make "Female Sperm" Insurance companies are beginning to include limited coverage for umbilical cord storage costs New Embryonic-Like Stem Cell Method Ethical, But Tissue from Aborted Human Fetuses Used Indirectly NEW! Frozen Stem Cells Save British Toddler's Life U.S. Cardiovascular Disease Research Using Adult Stem Cells is Progressing NEW! Finnish Patient Gets New Custom Jaw from Own Stem Cells NEW! Breast Milk Contains Stem Cells NEW! Artery Procedure Raises New Hopes to Avoid Amputation… BRITISH HOUSE OF LORDS ALLOWS HUMAN-ANIMAL CLONING, PASSES EMBRYO BILL. The British House of Lords has approved a controversial bill that could pave the way for scientific research that greatly concerns the pro-life community and could open the door for expanding abortions. The chamber also turned back an amendment to stop the human-animal cloning.   The House of Lords supported the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill and defeated 268-96 an amendment to it to stop scientists from cloning human embryos with a little bit of animal DNA.   Scientists want to create the clones to conduct experiments on diseases and how to alleviate them but pro-life groups say they should not be creating human life for the purpose of destroying it.   The bill allows them to make the cloned embryos and experiment on them for 14 days before killing them.   Lord Alton, a leading pro-life advocate, proposed the amendment and, with its failure, said he hoped to at least make it more difficult for scientists to get the licenses to clone the embryos.   "I have...

January 2008: Stem Cell Research

Biotech Firm Claims to Have Used Human Cloning to Make Human Child   Researchers Replicate Recent Studies Producing Ethical iPS Embryonic-Like Stem Cells   Embryonic Stem Cell Alternative Researcher Doesn't Like Destroying Life   Genetically-Related Cord Blood Stem Cells Do Better in Patient Transplants   Adult Stem Cells Appear to be Working as Treatment for Heart Disease   Making Brand New Hearts: Adult Stem Cells May Hold Key to Ethical Heart Transplants… BIOTECH FIRM CLAIMS TO HAVE USED HUMAN CLONING TO MAKE HUMAN CHILD. UPDATE: …Stem cells weren't produced by the new embryos either, and because of that, experts reacted coolly to the research. "I found it difficult to determine what was substantially new," said Doug Melton of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute. He said the "next big advance will be to create a human embryonic stem cell line" from cloned embryos. "This has yet to be achieved." Dr. George Daley of the Harvard institute and Children's Hospital Boston called the new report interesting but agreed that "the real splash" will be when somebody creates stem cell lines from cloned human embryos. [17Jan08, http://www.cnn.com/2008/TECH/science/01/17/cloned.embryos.ap/index.html] Scientists at a private research firm say they are the first to have successfully cloned a human being, publishing a report in the medical journal Stem Cells to that effect. Researchers at the California-based Stemagen claim to have taken the skin cells from two adult males and implanted the nuclei of those cells in human egg cells. If the company's claims are true, they are the first to engage in human cloning, even if only making human embryos in a petri dish. Samuel Wood of...

December 2007: Stem Cell Research

Talking Points on iPS Cells Adult Stem Cells Treat MS and Arthritis in Mice  NEW! Reprogrammed Skin Cells Strut Their Stuff (8Dec07) Researchers Turn Skin Cells Into Pluripotent Stem Cells (20Nov07) Scientists Discover How to Isolate Stem Cells in Womb Tissue Cord Blood Registry Sees Strong Growth in Charitable Banking Program  Menstrual Blood Could Be A Rich Source of Adult Stem Cells (JTM, 07)… Talking Points on iPS Cells — http://stemcellresearch.org/statement/pptalkingpointsweb.pdf     ADULT STEM CELLS TREAT MS AND ARTHRITIS IN MICE. As we celebrate the creation and potential of induced Pluripotent Stem Cells, adult stem cell research at Stanford University finds that blood stem cells taken from a donor with a healthy immune system effectively treated multiple sclerosis and arthritis in mice. From the story in the Telegraph: Thousands of patients with arthritis and multiple sclerosis are given new hope today by scientists who have developed a way to alter the immune system. Both conditions are caused when the immune system becomes faulty and attacks the body. Scientists have discovered that by injecting stem cells, the body's building blocks, taken from a healthy donor into the patient they can effectively transplant the donor's immune system and cure the condition. Until now, such a transplant would have been possible only by giving the patient aggressive treatments such as radiotherapy to wipe out the faulty immune system before carrying out a bone marrow transplant to provide new cells. But under the new system patients would be treated with a toxin to clear out the old immune system before being injected with healthy stem cells that would form a new immune...