Scientists have discovered a way to make stem cells from a patient's own white blood cells. Per the article:


Not only is the approach faster and far cheaper than current methods, but it eliminates the controversy surrounding embryonic stem cell research, which requires the destruction of an embryo, raising ethical concerns. The new approach also avoids the genetic risks associated with the alternative to the embryonic method, called induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. That technique requires the introduction of genetic material into a cell, and has lead to tumor growth in some cases....The researchers reported their results in this weeks journal of Nature.


The procedure seems to work in mice but has not been tested in humans.

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It should be tested in humans because the stem cells show so much possibility. One thing holding this all back was the idea that "stem cells have to come from dead embryos" but the religious will find something else now to discredit research. They also thought research would be "messing with god" or that we would be "playing god." Overlooked was the fact that this research might lead to growing a replacement for your own bad heart. Then jealousy enters when the fundies claim it just is not fair! This would make the rich able to "live forever."

But wait! Are the fundies admitting that they do not really believe in living in heaven forever? Is their jealousy an admittal that their religion is myth?

Very well put.

Now it's emerged that the study had faults including a spliced image and recycled material:

The findings made Ms. Obokata an overnight sensation in Japan. [...] But within days, doubts over the two-part study began to surface in the global science community. [...] Researchers around the world, meanwhile, reported difficulty in reproducing the results. Nature, Riken and Harvard began investigations into its credibility.

[...] Riken [...] acknowledged most allegations against the paper. It said, however, that those mistakes appeared not to have been intentional.

For example, Ms. Obokata has explained that a simple labeling mix-up led her to include an image she used in her dissertation in the Nature papers, the inquiry said. The splicing of an image showing genomic analysis was sloppy, the report said, but was simply carried out to replace a faint portion of the image with a clearer one, and did not affect the analysis’s outcome.

Still, Riken executives had some harsh words for Ms. Obokata. [...]

I hope Obokata turns out to be right after all although it does not appear that she will be. In any case I think scientists who run that kind of a show should be ostracized from the scientific community.




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