February 2007: Stem Cell Research

Adult Stem Cells Taken from Human Fat Tissue Used to Treat Heart Failure  Sweden Company Wants To Start First Stem Cell Research Factory Leading Scientist Charges Colleagues With “Misleading” Public British Stem Cell Researcher: Benefits of Therapeutic Cloning Oversold Rich Donors Fund California Stem Cell Research Panel During Lawsuit  Scientists See Potential In Amniotic Stem Cells Florida Gov Backs Measure Granting Funds to Non-Embryonic Research Only…     For more information about Stem Cell Research, click on Stem Cells in the left menu. Adult Stem Cells Taken from Human Fat Tissue Used to Treat Heart Failure. A heart attack victim was treated with stem cells taken from his own fat tissue in a groundbreaking new experiment taking place in Spain this week, Science Daily reported Feb.7.   In a collaborative effort, Dr. Francisco Fernandez-Aviles [Professor, Cardiovascular Medicine and Chief of Cardiology Service, Gregorio Marañón] and Dr. Perin [Director, New Interventional Cardiovascular Technology and Director of Stem Cell Center, Texas Heart Institute, St. Luke’s] have undertaken the attempt to use human adipose (fat) tissue as a source of adult stem cells to regenerate damaged heart muscle.   The cells were removed from adipose tissue in a procedure similar to that of liposuction. After processing, the stem cells were injected directly into the patient’s heart, targeting areas of damaged but still viable tissue.   “This is the first time we have used adipose-derived stem cells in humans. We had good results in our pre-clinical tests and we are excited about taking this research to the next level,” said Dr. Perin.   A similar study also being carried out at the Texas Heart Institute,...

Stem Cells Made Easy

Many well-meaning people have become very confused and overwhelmed by the muddied media reports about stem cells, unintentional or otherwise. Here is a quick, simplified outline to help clear the air about stem cells: Two Major Types of Human Stem Cells        1. Embryonic Stem Cells (ESCs)       Human egg and sperm are combined in the lab to make a fertilized human zygote. This human zygote is then allowed to divide to about the 8-cell stage and then it is destroyed for the stem cells. To destroy human life at any stage has always been considered immoral and unethical.       Not one — not even one — successful human treatment with embryonic stem cells has yet occurred. To the contrary, medical tests using embryonic stem cells have actually had disastrous results. ESC often grow uncontrollably and have produced tumors in people that have caused death or serious damage.         2.  Non-Embryonic Stem Cells       Non-Embryonic Stem Cells do not result in the death of a human being and so are considered a morally and ethically acceptable source of stem cells.         There are several sources for Non-Embryonic Stem Cells:             a. Adult Stem Cells (ASCs)                b. Newborn Placental (afterbirth) Stem Cells                c. Newborn Umbilical Cord Blood Stem Cells Adult Stem Cells (ASCs) can be obtained from any person’s blood, fat (adipose) tissue, bone marrow, muscle tissue — even from baby tooth pulp and recently from heart (cardiac) muscle tissue. Stem cells can be coaxed in the lab into many other types of cells, including nerve cells. Adult stem cells are being used now, and have already been used in dozens of research studies. Literally hundreds...

Senators Announce Cord Blood Stem Cell Bill (10/03)

3 U.S. Senators have introduced legislation that would promote alternatives to embryonic stem cell research. Pro-life groups support such adult stem cell research, which is ethical and more effective than using cells obtained by killing human embryos. “Cord blood stem cell research holds great promise,” Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) said. The bill would fund development of an infrastructure for collecting cord blood stem cells and research using the cord stem cells. Rep. Christopher Smith (R-NJ, 7/03) introduced similar legislation (HR 2852) that would establish a national umbilical cord blood bank. Dr. Pablo Rubenstein, director of the National Cord Blood Program at the New York Blood Center, said that cord blood banks have provided stem cells for more than 3,500 transplants worldwide and that umbilical cord and placenta stem cells result in less severe immune reaction and less risk of viral infection and are more easily accessible than other stem cell sources. Related web sites: Rep. Smith’s bill – http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c108:h.r.2852: [http://www.lifenews.com/bio110.html; LifeNews.com, 25Oct03, #3102] [NOTE: one of our own APFLI members founded and directs Babies For Life Foundation, which is a cord blood bank – www.babiesforlife.org] SENATORS ANNOUNCE CORD BLOOD STEM CELL BILL Illinois passed such a bill in 1/04 and is successfully collecting umbilical cord blood for treatments and...