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A breakthrough in treatment research?

Posted in Scientific research, Therapeutic treatments by Matt at WelcometoIllinois on August 8, 2008

News that scientists have been able to create stem cells to enable the testing of treatments for a variety of disorders including Down’s syndrome, is pretty interesting, especially as it avoids some of the issues some campaigners have with the creation of human embryos.

According to The Telegraph, researchers “say these cell lines can be used to mimic human disease more reliably than mice and other animal models and will be a boon for efforts to find new treatments.”

That will make it “possible for researchers to explore the 10 different disorders – including muscular dystrophy, juvenile diabetes, bubble baby immune disorder, Down syndrome and Parkinson’s disease – in a variety of cell and tissue types as they develop in laboratory cultures. These, in turn, can be used to test new drugs.”

From a personal perspective I’m also pleased to see Parkinson’s disease on the list, while even better news comes from the fact that “the scientists hope to make the cell lines available to scientists worldwide on a not for profit basis through a core laboratory funded by the Harvard Stem Cell Institute” in order to accelerate research.

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