Sunday, September 13, 2009

Did You Know?

While embryonic stem cells cannot heal, they can kill.

Even at the current stage of research, embryonic stem cells can be deadly to recipients. In animal testing, embryonic stem cells cause a significant number of recipients to develop cancers.

Using more developed fetal stem cells, a 52-year-old man died when the cells implanted in his brain became hair, cartilage and connective tissue. In another case, a group of patients with neural degenerative diseases with violent, uncontrollable shaking received fetal cell transplants into their brains. Rather than improving, 15-25% developed severe dyskinesia (worse shaking than they had before).

This failure of more specialized fetal cells is an indicator of how much more difficult it likely will be to get less specialized embryonic stem cells to work.

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