This category contains 12 posts

Umbilical Cord vs. Embryonic Stem Cells

The Proceedings of the National Academies of Science (PNAS) has published the article that was the subject of this blog last week, and which claims that researchers at the University of Texas at Houston have produced the “first transplantable source of lung epithelial cells.” There is no evidence that these cells are “transplantable,” and they … Continue reading

$17.9 Million plus for Texas: ethical stem cells

The UT Austin Daily Texan has the only report that I can find in the news about Wednesday’s announcement that the University of Texas Health Center in Houston is the recipient of $17.9 million for stem cell research on treatments for heart disease. The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute granted $17.9 million for the … Continue reading

“How do you say "Duh!” in French?

Il n’est pas facile! Nanodot reports on a citizen conference consensus paper which concludes that understanding nanotechnology and evaluating the ethics of research on constructs and machines built on the molecular leve requires effort and may be too hard. They didn’t know that nanotechnology existed until someone told them and then found that they had … Continue reading

>Immune Privileged Cord Blood Stem Cells

>Pluristem is one of the companies focusing on the commercial development of stem cells. There are two or three names which have been regularly sending out press releases concerning their research and development (besides ACT, of course). In this case, it’s a company that’s marketing selected umbilical cord blood cells or placental cells. If the … Continue reading

>Texas leads in nanotech armor

>Betterhumans (“forward thinkers discussing, celebrating and creating the future”) reports that another Texas researcher is a leader in biotech. University of Texas’ nanotechnologist Ray Baughman has learned to spin a new yarn from carbon nanotubules. It appears that the yarn contracts when stimulated with electricity and is expected to be strong enough to serve as … Continue reading

>Book Review: Michael Crichton’s NEXT

>“Stroke Damage May Help Smokers Kick the Habit: The insula, an area of the brain largely ignored by researchers, may hold the key to breaking harmful addictions” (Scientific American Science and Technology News, January 25, 2007) “Fresh light thrown on tragic drug trial: Animal tests may have missed danger because monkeys ‘too clean’.” ( online, … Continue reading

>The future of stem cells, Texas and politics

>The Friday, January 26, 2007 Austin American Statesman editorial, “Stem cell opposition could steer research away from Texas,” flatly states that Governor Rick Perry’s $3 Billion dollar cancer research initiative won’t help at all if it doesn’t include funding for embryonic stem cell research. The Statesman editors doubt that there will be any scientists to … Continue reading

>Calling all scientists

>The Aspen Ideas Festival is a meeting that I had never heard of until recently (I actually found it Googling for “Bioethics and Politics” and “Bioethics and Policy” which are names I’ve come up with for alternative blogs in case I decide to change my focus) There are audio recordings and transcripts online which contain … Continue reading

>Brain wave biometric key

>New Scientist Tech reports on news of a possible personal identification device in the works: This novel biometric system should be difficult to forge, making it suitable for high-security applications, claim the researchers behind it. The system was developed by Dimitrios Tzovaras and colleagues at the Centre for Research and Technology Hellas, in Greece. It … Continue reading

How human is human-enough?

A group of very well respected scientists, philosophers and ethicists (all involved in bioethics and stem cell research) have joined together to discuss and draft what they call a “consensus” on stem cell research, both destructive embryonic stem cell research and non-destructive, ethical non-embryonic stem cell research. The document can be accessed at the Berman … Continue reading

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