After all the controversies, issues, and funding restrictions on the use of stem cells derived from embryos, there may now be a glimmer of light at the end of a long dark tunnel. It's the light that may spinal-cord-injury patients had been waiting for a long time to come. It appears that stem cells from Adult donors can reverse the damage and effects of injury to the spinal cord.
The conclusion came from lab experiments done with rats lead by Miodrag Stojkovic, who heads the Cellular Reprogramming Laboratory at Centro de Investigacion Principe Felipe in Spain. He and his group had transplanted what are called progenitor stem cells, from the spinal cords of rats, into those of other rats with spinal cord injuries. A week after the transplant, the injured rast showed significant improvement in mobility, apparently reversing paralysis.
Stojkovic says "the human body contains the tools to repair damaged spinal cords. Our work clearly demonstrates that we need both adult and embryonic stem cells to understand our body and apply this knowledge in regenerative medicine." It is hoped that the Obama administration will lift restrictions on stem cell research that had been imposed during the term of former US President George Bush. It's really a somewhat old medical technology whose time has come.
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