Thursday, February 09, 2017

Sampling Stem Cell News: $1 Million Gift, Unsettling Thoughts and Paolo Macchiarini

New-fangled pigs, $1 million donations and a recommendation to wind down the stem cell agency, it was all part of the stew of stem cell news recently.

Here is the first bite from recent bits and pieces from the media:

Eli and Edythe Broad added another $1 million to the many millions they have already contributed to stem cell research, much of it in California. The latest cash went to USC, UCLA and UC San Francisco, which have already received many millions more from the Broads. Charlie Rose also interviewed Eli in a six-minute segment that can be found here. Broad told Rose that he does not think the government is doing enough for science.

The Sacramento Bee carried an opinion piece headlined "To fulfill stem cell agency’s promise, consider winding it down." Joe Radato, who was an aide to former California Gov. Pete Wilson, and Bernard Munos of FasterCures were the authors. Instead of providing more funding for the California stem agency, they said a better approach would be to "provide funds directly to California-based companies developing new drugs to cure diseases and prolong healthy lives."

Paul Knoepfler, a UC Davis stem cell researcher and blogger, authored a piece in the Washington Post dealing with the "unsettling thought" of human-pig hybrids. He wrote that more than 100,000 people in the United States are waiting for organ transplants and that these new-fangled pigs could be a source, down the road. Knoepler said the ethical and other obstacles are like to be overcome.

The latest on former super surgeon Paolo Macchiarini was reported by Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty. He is in Russia after being fired by the Karolinska Institute in Sweden after some of his patients died following surgery involving stem cells. The story reported that his activities have been newly restricted in Russia. Macchiarini's operations, which included a 2010 procedure at UC Davis, drew wide-ranging, favorable international attention for a number of years. Sphere: Related Content

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