In a piece complete with numbered footnotes, Young (see photo) wrote,
"The media response was massive . The story was carried by almost every news source [18-20]. The community response was initially strongly positive. Coming on the 3rd day after President Barack Obama’s inauguration, some thought that the approval of the first HESC trial was due to Obama’s coming to power.Young also wrote,
"The exuberance faded as people read the fine print. First, the trial is not for people with chronic spinal cord injury. It is intended to be used within 2 weeks after injury for people with complete thoracic spinal cord injury. Second, the goal of the trial is to show safety and feasibility, not necessarily efficacy. Third, the cells have been differentiated to the point that they are no longer acting as stem cells but only as oligodendroglia."
"Geron’s web site and news reports indicate that the trial will treat 8-10 patients who are within 2 weeks after “complete” thoracic spinal cord injury. It will probably start in July 2009. However, many details are unclear. Before the FDA placed a hold on the trial application in May 2008, Geron had said that the cells would be transplanted into the spinal cord of patients undergoing spinal cord decompressive surgery and all the patients will receive a 2-month period of pharmacological immunosuppression . It is not clear that the same regimen will be used.Sphere: Related Content
"In the meantime, the reaction of the spinal cord injury community has ranged from exuberance over the approval of the first HESC trial  to deep pessimism over comments by Okarma, who said that people with “complete” spinal cord injury have no chance of recovering any function, or something to this effect. Many people in the spinal cord injury community  were disappointed at being excluded from the study which is only for the newly injured."