I give them 50 years for me.
February 25, 2009 5:56 PM   Subscribe

Functional Neurons Induced From Adult Stem Cells. Meanwhile, stem cells may be better than bone marrow for certain cancers, and have the potential to revolutionize the supply of blood. Anecdotal success stories continue to pile up.
posted by StrikeTheViol (21 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
One pound of stem cells please
posted by qvantamon at 6:13 PM on February 25, 2009 [1 favorite]


Here you go, my Brazilian friend.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 6:17 PM on February 25, 2009


I'd hate to have a dozen fingers spring into life inside my femur.
posted by b1tr0t at 6:39 PM on February 25, 2009


Fetal stem cells cause (brain) tumor in teenage boy. So, I would be interested to have someone with more knowledge than me explore why (other than for the much-debated ethical reasons) adult stem cells are better, or for example would not have had the potential to trigger other diseases. This is particularly so because from my understanding, the mechanism of action by which these tumors arose from the stem cell treatment was unknown.

It seems that scientists have some ideas on this, and so I would love to see someone who has some info/explanation. I am most certainly not trying to dispute the importance of developments in stem cell technology - I know from my research in Vivi's treatment that autolougus stem cell transplants have already become common (if not standard) in allowing dramatically more aggressive chemo, with positive results.
posted by bunnycup at 6:40 PM on February 25, 2009


I just signed up for my prehensile tail!
posted by Lipstick Thespian at 6:45 PM on February 25, 2009 [1 favorite]


Awesome but let's not burn the bridge to one route of treatment because another is showing promise. We have the opportunity to make very rapid very dramatic advances in many areas of research and disease treatment. Attack on all fronts!
posted by Science! at 6:48 PM on February 25, 2009 [1 favorite]


bunnycup, here's a quote from a recent press release about that case that sheds a little light on it: "The authors discuss the extremely rare nature of this side effect and speculate that the patient's underlying condition may itself have allowed the tumor to become established, since individuals with Ataxia Telangiectasia often have an impaired immune system."

Unfortunately I don't know any more about it than that. I thought it was a bit odd that they didn't mention that in the SciAm piece.
posted by benign at 7:32 PM on February 25, 2009


I hope that fetal stem cells are always needed. They're just cooler because they make religious types mad.
posted by Mayor Curley at 7:46 PM on February 25, 2009 [6 favorites]


I hope that fetal stem cells are always needed. They're just cooler because they make religious types mad

Right. Because pissing off large numbers of fanatically determined and well-organized activists is a great way to ensure the swift and easy progress of vital, life-saving research. I hope you were being as tongue in cheek there as I am being sarcastic, Mayor Curley.

Anyway, go Science! I don't understand half this stuff, but I love all of it.
posted by AdamCSnider at 8:30 PM on February 25, 2009 [1 favorite]


They're just cooler because they make religious types mad.

Yeah, I echo what AdamCSnider said. Taking masochistic joy in pissing off millions of people is at root of liberals' ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
posted by jock@law at 8:51 PM on February 25, 2009 [3 favorites]


Goddamn, the twenty-first century is awesome.
posted by EatTheWeak at 10:22 PM on February 25, 2009


Oh boy Anecdotes! That's where I'm a viking!

Just messin. I hope they get to proving stuff about these effects really really soon. go go go empiricism!
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:13 PM on February 25, 2009


Here are some more detailed links related to the first (Functional Neurons) one up top:

Press release.

Article abstract:

"The study demonstrates the feasibility of using iPS-derived motor
neurons ... to replace damaged or dead motor neurons in patients with
certain disorders.... Motor neurons are lost in many conditions,
including ... Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Spinal Muscular
Atrophy."

Full article (page contains link to PDF, for which you'll need a login)

The UCLA lead researcher for this paper is William Lowry
posted by zippy at 1:01 AM on February 26, 2009


One pound of stem cells please

You may take your pound of stem cells, but don't spill a drop of human spirit.
posted by StickyCarpet at 1:28 AM on February 26, 2009


Remarkable. It's almost impossible to imagine what the world will be like in fifty years, because you just never know where things like this research are going to take us next.
posted by voltairemodern at 4:38 AM on February 26, 2009


At this rate, I can have my youth back and live forever!
posted by saysthis at 5:57 AM on February 26, 2009


Abstract of an article discussing a successful outcome in the incurable cancer that my daughter had:

Successful outcome with tandem myeloablative chemotherapy and autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplants in a patient with atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumor of the central nervous system.

Several ongoing clinical trials in the brain tumor-verse, such as the IRS and Head Start approaches, are using this method. I only know about one VERY TINY area, that which afflicted Viv.
posted by bunnycup at 6:09 AM on February 26, 2009


Taking masochistic joy in pissing off millions of people is at root of liberals' ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Please don't insinuate that I'm a liberal. I want people angry because I want Civil War II, a bloodless war where the South says "We're seceding!" and the North says "Pfft. Go!"
posted by Mayor Curley at 9:03 AM on February 26, 2009


If you want to see real money pour in to stem cell research, go after stem-cell-based penis enlargement.
posted by Xoebe at 9:53 AM on February 26, 2009


If you want to see real money pour in to stem cell research, go after stem-cell-based penis enlargement.

I'm guessing hair restoration would open the monetary floodgates.
posted by newmoistness at 10:47 AM on February 26, 2009


Taking masochistic joy in pissing off millions of people is at root of liberals' ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
As was forcefully demonstrated by the Congressional elections of 2006 and the Presidential elections of 2008. President McCain and his Republican majority are certainly going to make progress on stem cell research more difficult.
posted by scrump at 12:50 PM on February 26, 2009


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