Sunday, November 26, 2006

ACT Press Releases and the NY Times

The ACT flap is one of those stories that will dog embryonic stem cell research for years – regardless of the merits or the lack of merits of the issue. One reason is that ESC research foes will not let it die.

The latest chapter, however, came in the New York Times with a related press release from ACT, the Alameda, Ca., firm whose research triggered the hooha.

Reporter Nicholas Wade wrote on Nov. 22:
"The scientific journal Nature today issued a clarification of a recent report that human embryonic stem cells could be derived without harm to the embryo, but the journal affirmed the report’s scientific validity.

"The finding, by Robert Lanza and colleagues at Advanced Cell Technology...caused a stir when it was published online in August, because it seemed to undercut the argument of stem-cell opponents that working with the cells necessarily means a potential human life has to be destroyed."
Wade also reported:
"Dr. Lanza said that he had just finished training a team from the University of California, San Francisco, in how to use his technique, and that he expected visitors from four other laboratories."
The company quickly followed the Times story with a press release headlined:
"New York Times Cites Advanced Cell's Review in Nature On an Approach to Generate Human Embryonic Stem Cells Without Destroying the Embryo"

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