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CONTENTS Issue #404
COMMENT
Making Babies the Hard Way
The importance of national stem cell funding in the US
NEWS DIGEST
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Making Babies the Hard Way
19 April 2007 - by Caroline Gallup
In mid-2003 I was in the depths of despair. My husband - the love of my life - could not father our much-longed for child as he was born with azoospermia (a zero sperm count, probably caused by a missing section of the Y chromosome). I had overcome my initial misgivings... [Read More]
The importance of national stem cell funding in the US
23 April 2007 - by Sam Berger and Professor Jonathan Moreno
It appears that once again the US Congress will be unable to override President Bush's expected veto of legislation to loosen federal restrictions on human embryonic stem (ES) cell research. In light of this political stalemate, as well as efforts in states like California, New Jersey, and New York to... [Read More]
Mother freezes eggs for infertile daughter
23 April 2007 - by Katy Sinclair
A Canadian woman has frozen her eggs in the hope that her daughter may use them in later life. Lawyer Melanie Bolvin's decision has instigated a fierce ethical debate on the nature of egg donation, particularly as the result could mean that her daughter, Flavie, will one... [Read More]
UK stem cell network launched
23 April 2007 - by Dr Jess Buxton
A new initiative to oversee and promote stem cell research in the UK was launched last week. The UK National Stem Cell Network (UKNSCN) aims to 'bring coherence and coordination' to existing regional and national activities in the field. It was formed in response to a... [Read More]
'Self-renewal' gene discovered in embryonic and adult stem cells
23 April 2007 - by Heidi Nicholl
Researchers have identified the gene which controls the critical self-renewal function of stem cells. Both adult and embryonic stem cells are able to repeatedly renew themselves, which allows them to be grown up in large numbers in the laboratory before being differentiated into specific tissue types. Although... [Read More]
Gene therapy hope for Parkinson's disease
19 April 2007 - by Dr Jess Buxton
US researchers have reported encouraging initial results from a trial of a new type of gene therapy treatment for Parkinson's disease (PD). The Phase 1 clinical trial, designed to test the safety and effectiveness of the approach, involved 12 patients with advanced PD. After a year... [Read More]
Advances in egg freezing trigger debate
24 April 2007 - by MacKenna Roberts
Advances in egg freezing have leapt from the lab to the public, particularly in the US where clinics are unregulated, to offer assisted reproduction using frozen eggs despite the long-term effects being little known, according to the journal Science. A news article evaluated the reliability and significance... [Read More]
US state stem cell policy update
24 April 2007 - by Antony Starza-Allen
Florida's Senate Commerce Committee has approved two amendments to the constitution; one that provides for $20 million a year for ten years for stem cell research, including research using human embryos, and another, the 'Florida Hope Offered through Principled, Ethically Sound Stem Cell Research Act' - the 'HOPE... [Read More]

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