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Stem cell transplants stalled blindness in rats

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Nerve stem cell transplants may help slow the progression of macular degeneration, the most common cause of blindness in the developed world, U.S. researchers said on Monday.

They said putting nerve stem cells from StemCells Inc near the retinas of rats with a form of macular degeneration helped keep the disease from advancing to blindness for several months.

“These cells improve the chemical environment in the back of the eye,” said Ray Lund of the Casey Eye Institute at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, whose findings were presented at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in Chicago.

Lund said
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