S. Koreans made a significant announcement today: they have managed to produce human stem cells which are tailored to a particular person. This raises the possibility of treatment with stem cells without the risk or rejection. The method involves substituting the donor ovum’s DNA with the patient’s, and allowing an early embryo to develop. The stem cells are extracted before the embryo becomes viable.
Elsewhere, some UK scientists were able to clone an embryo using a donor ovum and DNA from stem cells.
Interesting times, indeed. I haven’t really thought about the ethical questions which these procedures bring up, but they are, of course, difficult since both procedures involve getting a human embryo started.
Listening to Chicago from the album “Sufjan Stevens: Illinois” by Sufjan Stevens