Scientists have finally cloned human embryonic stem cells bit.ly/12LrSJm
— Forbes Tech News (@ForbesTech) May 22, 2013
Because I was the recipient of life-saving stem cells 5.8 years ago, I am naturally more than a casual observer of the science. But everyone who seriously follows this story line and these tweets, realizes that society and medicine at large both face certain ethical questions regarding transplants using embryonic cells. While the adult cells issue is largely resolved, I am not sure that this “breakthrough” cloning of embryonic cells solves the larger ethical issue, but it does bring the science to an important threshold, thanks to the work of:
Shoukhrat Mitalipov is an associate scientist in the Division of Reproductive & Developmental Sciences of ONPRC, Oregon Stem Cell Center and Departments of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Molecular & Medical Genetics, and co-director of the ART/ESC core at the Center. He earned his Ph.D. degree in Developmental & Stem Cell Biology at the Research Center for Medical Genetics in Moscow, Russia. He came to Utah State University in 1995 to conduct his postdoctoral research in stem cell and developmental biology. Dr. Mitalipov moved to the Oregon center in 1998.
In summary, the research by Dr. Mitalipov deals with totipotent and pluripotent stem cells that are important as a unique research tool that allows investigation of the mechanisms regulating early primate development and differentiation. Human stem cells also provide the far-reaching foundation for the field of regenerative medicine and offer hope for the treatment of a wide range of clinical conditions that can be attributed to the loss or malfunction of specific cell types. Translational research in the clinically relevant nonhuman primate model is highly desirable to evaluate the safety, feasibility and efficacy of cell-based therapies. The basic research conducted in the Mitalipov lab provides new insights into the generation, maintenance and developmental potential of primate totipotent and pluripotent stem cells.