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CONTENTS Issue #456
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Welcome to BioNews by email, published by the Progress Educational Trust, providing you with news, comment and reviews on genetics, assisted conception, embryo/stem cell research and related areas. 


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'Badge of Honour' or Protective Shield? Are the HTA the new arbiters of the cord blood industry?
6 May 2008 - by Dr Karen Devine
In the 21st Century, the collection and use of stem cells from umbilical cord blood (UCB) is anything but a new phenomenon. Since the first successful UCB transplant in 1988, the use of UCB for transplantation purposes has been used in over 6,000 treatments worldwide and has proved to be... [Read More]
US congress approves genetic anti-discrimination law
6 May 2008 - by MacKenna Roberts
Following the Senate's unanimous approval the previous week, the US House of Representatives, on Thursday, almost-unanimously (414-1) passed the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act ('GINA'), providing final Congressional support for legislation that prohibits genetic discrimination by employers, insurers and unions. The bill (HR 493), which is hailed... [Read More]
The UK's HTA to regulate the collection of cord blood stem cells
6 May 2008 - by Dr Karen Devine
The UK's Human Tissue Authority (HTA) has announced that the collection of umbilical cord blood stem cells is to be regulated for the first time in the UK. Cord blood contains a rich source of stem cells that could be used to fight disease and may in... [Read More]
Ohio considers anti-cloning measure
6 May 2008 - by Antony Starza-Allen
A measure which if passed will ban all forms of embryo cloning in the state of Ohio, including somatic cell nuclear transfer or so-called 'therapeutic cloning', is currently being debated by the Ohio Senate Judiciary Civil Justice Committee. The Committee has not yet voted on Senate Bill... [Read More]
StemCyte opens research facility in New Jersey
6 May 2008 - by Antony Starza-Allen
The Governor of the US state of New Jersey has announced the opening of a new stem cell research centre which will develop therapies using umbilical cord blood for spinal cord injuries. The Californian-based biotechnology firm, StemCyte, was given permission to open the facility in Ewing along... [Read More]
New human genome maps identify large regions of genetic variability
6 May 2008 - by Dr Rachael Panizzo
A new study, published in the journal Nature, has mapped the genome of eight individuals and revealed large regions of genetic variability. An international collaboration led by Evan Eichler at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute compared the genome of four African, two Asian, and two European individual... [Read More]
IVF does not lead to early menopause
6 May 2008 - by Katy Sinclair
A group of researchers at the Bourn Hall Clinic, Queensland University of Technology and the Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, have concluded that IVF treatment does not hasten the onset of the menopause or the severity of symptoms, having investigated the first generation of... [Read More]
Mouse heart and blood cells obtained from reprogrammed skin cells
6 May 2008 - by Evelyn Harvey
Heart and blood cells can be grown from reprogrammed mouse skin cells, report University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) researchers in the journal Stem Cells. The researchers say this is the first demonstration that stem cells from reprogrammed skin can be used to generate three types of... [Read More]
Nurses mobilise to put an end to 'postcode lottery' of IVF provision
6 May 2008 - by MacKenna Roberts
Last week, nurses in the UK decided to take action and lobby the British government to demand uniform eligibility criteria for infertility treatment and for the provision of up to three cycles of NHS-funded IVF be implemented by all UK fertility clinics, replacing the arbitrary 'postcode lottery... [Read More]

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