September 29, 2005

Adult stem cells restore feeling in paraplegic?

For all that talk from the pundits and politicians about how embryonic stem cells could have cured, and even “saved” Christopher Reed … perhaps they should read this.
In an apparent major breakthrough, scientists in Korea report using umbilical cord blood stem cells to restore feeling and mobility to a spinal-cord injury patient. The research, published in the peer-reviewed journal Cythotherapy, centered on a woman had been a paraplegic 19 years due to an accident.

After an infusion of umbilical cord blood stem cells, stunning results were recorded:

"The patient could move her hips and feel her hip skin on day 15 after transplantation. On day 25 after transplantation her feet responded to stimulation."

Umbilical cord cells are considered "adult stem cells," in contrast to embryonic stem cells, which have raised ethical concerns because a human embryo must be destroyed in order to harvest them.
However, keep in mind ...
Bioethics specialist Wesley J. Smith, writing in, expressed enthusiasm about the apparent breakthrough, but also urged caution.

"We have to be cautious," said Smith, a senior fellow at the Seattle-based Discovery Institute and a special consultant to the Center for Bioethics and Culture. "One patient does not a treatment make."

The authors of the study note, writes Smith, that the lamenectomy the patient received might have offered some benefit.

"But still, this is a wonderful story that offers tremendous hope for paralyzed patients," he said.


At October 03, 2005 2:02 PM, Blogger M. Joseph said...

Because of your interest in Adult Stem Cell research, I am letting you know about a new article from

Please feel free to link to this article from your blog, for conversation, criticism, praise, or however you choose to comment on the piece. You may also use the first approximately 100 words (Read: fair use rights) in your post to lead your audience into the article to be read in completion on the website.

This is the article:

Live Patients & Dead Mice
The little-known story of the stem cells that actually work.
by David A. Prentice

Here's another article from the same issue of Christianity Today magazine that might also interest your readers.

Ethics Interrupted
What does it mean when even embryonic stem-cell researchers have some qualms about their work?
by Christine A. Scheller

For a full list of ailments that Adult Stem Cells are already effectively treating (in human patients), see this blog post:

Back Four Seconds Blog

Please contact me if you have any questions. And thank you for considering a link to this important article for those in your blog's audience interested in Adult Stem Cells.


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