Monday, May 12, 2008

Life Links 5/12/08

So much for the embryonic stem cell research head start. From an article in Nature on induced pluripotent stem cells:
The ten-year head start human ES cells got on human iPS cells has effectively shrunk to zero, says Thomson, because so much of the legacy of ES cells — reagents, culture media, hands-on expertise and experimental history — is transferable to iPS cells.

A man in St. Louis about to throw away his lawn clippings found a newborn boy in a dumpster and saved him.
“Falker says whoever left the child in the trash bin had a plan in mind.

“The baby was covered up so nobody could find it,” he said.
The child was recently released from the hospital to foster parents.

Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius’ pro-choice position has begun to catch up with her.
The Roman Catholic archbishop for northeast Kansas said Friday that Gov. Kathleen Sebelius should refrain from taking Communion until she publicly repudiates her support for abortion rights.
As a professed Catholic, you can only veto so many prolife bills before the church leadership has to do something more than issue a statement noting their disappointment. Archbishop Naumann isn’t fooling around. I wonder if something like this will ever happen to Governor Granholm in Michigan.

Three individuals in India have been sentenced to 10 years in prison after forcing a women to abort her child after a ultrasound test showed the child was a girl. After the abortion, it was discovered the test was wrong and the child was a boy.

Father Thomas Berg wonders if New York will follow California’s path of spending stem cell money on new, fancy real estate instead of the quickest way to treatments.
So, why was Lubin’s application shot down?

Lubin’s clinical data, in the opinion of his colleagues and independent observers, was solid. His request — in response to an RFA for facilities grants — was modest in comparison to the eight-figure grants the CIRM eventually approved. He just wanted to build new labs for the Children’s Hospital. And Lubin is no second-string researcher: His work is supported by the NIH, and he has served on many NIH peer-review committees. Lubin’s research, which focuses on adult stem cells derived from the placenta, could arguably translate almost immediately into therapeutic applications to the benefit of millions of black children who suffer atrociously from the effects of sickle cell anemia. About 1,000 babies a year are born with the genetic disease in the United States.

As it turns out, Lubin’s work was faulted among other things, according to a summary on the CIRM website, for showing “no evidence of current use or planned expansion into the use of human embryonic stem cells.”

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