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Right to Recover ~ Winning the Political and Religious Wars Over Stem Cell Research in America presents scientific facts that challenge readers to think for themselves rather than accept political or religious views on stem cell research.

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This book is available by request in bookstores nationwide.


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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Step 17 of 24 Steps Toward Stem Cell Success

Across America and around the world, scientists are developing new ways to use embryonic stem cells to fight chronic disease and disability.

One widely-publicized advance is the development of “imitation” embryonic stem cells, the new Thomson/Yamanaka reprogrammed skin cells. But even if these new cells are proven completely successful, (which may take 10-15 years) that will not be the end of the struggle. We still need to know how to use the embryonic stem cells (from whatever source) and fulfill the motto of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine: “Turning stem cells into cures”.

Fortunately, the world is not waiting. Here are highlights of just a few recent advances. For more complete information, visit the excellent website, http://www.sciencedaily.com/, which has clear descriptions of the experiments, and citations for the source papers.

17. MODELING MONSTERS: ISOLATING LOU GEHRIG’S DISEASE: In the terrible disease ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, better known as Lou Gehrig’s disease), motor nerves break down. But do the nerves fail because of a problem inside the cells or outside them? Scientists Kevin Eggan of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute and Serge Przedborski of Columbia University Medical Center, used embryonic stem cells to make a microscopic model of ALS, to learn how the disease develops, and which drugs may be useful to defeat it. Using their own new model, these champion scientists saw that a non-nerve cell called an astrocyte may be a poisonous part of the problem.

Don Reed
http://www.stemcellbattles.com/

Don C. Reed is co-chair of Californians for Cures, and writes for their web blog, www.stemcellbattles.com. Reed was citizen-sponsor for California’s Roman Reed Spinal Cord Injury Research Act of 1999, named after his paralyzed son; he worked as a grassroots advocate for California’s Senator Deborah Ortiz’s three stem cell regulatory laws, served as an executive board member for Proposition 71, the California Stem Cells for Research and Cures Act, and is director of policy outreach for Americans for Cures. The retired schoolteacher is the author of five books and thirty magazine articles, and has received the National Press Award.

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