Our state and country have invested a mind-boggling hundreds of millions of dollars in embryonic stem cell research. States are vying to become the embryonic stem cell research capital of the world, with Wisconsin in the hunt. Controversy surrounds the research because living human embryos must be destroyed to obtain these cells.
Here’s the best kept secret from the public — embryonic stem cells have had zero — yes, that is 0 — results in treating human patients.
Recently, a British scientist honestly conceded failure in a newspaper interview. Here are some of his provocative comments:
Admission that scientists may never be able to overcome the hurdles — such as the development of tumors or immune syndrome rejection issues — that plague embryonic stem cell research and make it risky in humans.
“We have to be cautious. It may not deliver therapy for anything. We may find that stem therapy is quite a risky business.”
“I could not guarantee to anyone that this work will actually lead to improvements in disease as a definite.”
In the meantime, other scientists are forging ahead with research using the recently discovered iPS cells which act like embryonic stem cells but actually come from human skin cells. The best part — no one has to die to retrieve the cells. Because this discovery is so new, there are no human trials to date. However, scientists at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research recently used these new cells to successfully treat mice with Parkinson’s disease.
Neither embryonic stem cells nor the new iPS cells are as successful at this time as the use of adult stem cells which have been used to beneficially treat humans with 73 diseases.
So, the question remains: Is embryonic stem cell research already obsolete? The answer is a resounding yes!