As Aaditya watches a cartoon show on television, his right hand wavering to caress soft toys (SpongeBob SquarePants and Noddy) tucked next to him in bed, the boy has no clue that researchers and doctors across the world are watching his recovery with bated breath.
That’s because this frail boy, who is set to turn eight next month, is the first ever to receive a stem cell transplant for a rare and destructive illness — called Childhood Alzheimer’s (medical term: Niemann-Pick Type C or NPC), which causes neurological degeneration and seizures — for which there is no conventional treatment. Stem
Researchers believe that they can produce new eggs in infertile women even if the ovaries are damaged or the woman has passed the usual age of conception.
The technique involves transplanting stem cells into the ovaries and could work on the one in 10 women who suffer from infertility as well as those who want children late in life.
Until recently it was assumed that a woman was born with a finite lifetime store of around two million egg-producing follicles and no more could be produced.
By puberty this number has already fallen to about 400,000, and at the menopause too few
(CBS) This week, British researchers announced another extraordinary breakthrough in medical research. They have taken stem cells from an embryo and created human sperm.
It’s very exciting, said the man who led the team. They have heads, they have tails, and they move. They have all the essential qualities for creating life. The aim, we are told, is to revolutionize the treatment of infertility.
But this discovery has created some interesting dilemmas. Sperm could be produced from female stem cells. That would mean women would no longer need men to create babies. It could also be theoretically used to produce
Image by pablocanateam via Flickr
Research in Italy, in the coming years, will suffer much more compared to research in other countries, because, explained a study on the future of biomedical research in Italy described yesterday in Siena by Stefano Palumbo, “the national debate on bioethical issues will continue to be affected by pre-established ideological positions, and often, will be aimed at imposing limits on scientific research”.
Due to the overwhelming “majority of Catholic members in the National Bioethics Committee, Italy will be,” according to the study, “the most conservative country in the world regarding stem cells,” which will result in
There’s a medical breakthrough for the deaf.
Scientists at United Kingdom’s Sheffield University have created stem cells from embryos to replace damaged cells in the inner ear — reversing hearing loss.
The embryonic stem cells could be converted into workable hearing cells for people born with inherited hearing problems and who’ve suffered damage to their ear cells during their lifetime, according to the scientists.
The breakthrough stem-cell discovery is “incredibly promising” and “opens up exciting possibilities,” Dr. Ralph Holme, a biomedical researcher, told the British Broadcasting Corporation.
But the stem-cell research could be halted by critics who argue that the controversial