Embryonic stem cell breakthrough?

You may have seen the headline, “Embryonic stem cells can repair eyes, company says…

AMDG notes some things in the article, and catalogues all the “might’s, maybe’s and probabaly’s” that the scientists must include, even as they promise spectacular results.

[A few of my comments in brackets]:

Stem cells made from human embryos can home in on damaged eyes, hearts and arteries of mice and rats, and appear to start repairs, a U.S. company said on Monday.

[notice the verb "make", human embryos are material for production. Like one would "make" cookies out of dough.]

… companies working with private funding, such as the over-the-counter listed ACT, may do as they please [regarding embryonic stem cell lines].

Working with embryonic stem cells is not easy. For medical uses, researchers would like to partly differentiate them — start them down the road toward becoming a specific cell or tissue type.

[This is a euphamism for "letting the embryo develop as it would normally." Starting down the road toward becoming a specific cell or tissue type is what embryos naturally do as they mature. In other words, they let the embryo live long enough to start creating "pluripotent" (or more specified) stem cells and then take those cells, in most cases killing the embryo in the process.]

… The researchers killed the mice to check the cells’ progress, so they do not know the long-term effects.

[Not to iterject, but I'm sure they intend to let some mice live before they begin human testing. embryonic stem cells, when operated upon, often become cancerous because cancer means the cell's normal activities have been compromised.]

They want to begin human testing by the end of next year.

Update: And in the same vein, eugenics takes another timid step forward in Britain.

The first casualty? Squinting!

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