Thursday, October 19, 2006

It is Good To See that the Stem Cell Debate

is only about 2-4 day old embryos, and not fetal tissue that has implanted and been aborted...


Scientists used human fetal stem cells to strengthen spinal cords in rats. The cells, taken from the spinal cord of an aborted eight-week fetus, differentiated (specialized) into functional spinal neurons and slowed the rats' degenerative neural disease, postponing their deaths. Differentiation, which is difficult in adult spinal cords (as the researchers noted), may have been easier in this case because fetal stem cells are more differentiated than embryonic stem cells. According to Reuters, "A company associated with the researchers is incubating batches of the human cells, taken from an aborted fetus, and hopes to market them as a treatment for several sorts of paralyzing conditions." (For Human Nature's take on fetus farming, click here.)



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