Stem Cells show major breakthrough in treatment of Parkinson’s

Tomas Martin @ 26-03-2008

Is this a cure or should we leave it alone?The UK parliament this week is considering a wide-reaching bill on stem-cell research. Under pressure from a number of religious groups, Prime Minister Gordon Brown has allowed MPs to have a ‘free vote’ on certain parts of the bill. There’s no doubt that stem cells are a tricky moral issue – are they to be considered alive, or just a group of cells like a skin transfusion?

Meanwhile, a study of stem cell use has shown that they can make a great deal of impact in reversing the effects and possibly curing Parkinson’s disease. Other degenerative diseases such as Alzheimers are also thought to be potentially cured by treatment with stem cells. The big advantage to this latest scientific discovery is that the mice in the study did not reject the stem cells, a major step forward in the useability of the treatment.

To be sure the issue is a very complex one. Is it better to not play around with cells taken from embryos, even those that would only be disposed of? Is it a can of worms best left alone or are the moral quandaries worth it for the difference that could be made to the many people with diseases stem cells are thought to help? It’s a difficult choice but one we’ll have to face in the coming decades. Scientists are making great advances in the field and sooner or later will produce cures for some diseases. We’ll have to choose whether it’s right to use them or not.

[picture via BBC]

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3 Responses to “Stem Cells show major breakthrough in treatment of Parkinson’s”

  1. Khannea Suntzu says:

    Write them. Let them know what you feel about this. Show them there are people that want rationality to prevail over the archaic superstitions of some quaint pedophile cult.

  2. Steve says:

    Write them. Let them know what you feel about this. Show them there are people that think scientific research shouldn’t be above human rights.

  3. Khannea Suntzu says:

    Write them. Let them know what you feel about this. Show them there are people that think scientific research shouldn’t be above the rights of a clump of cells one hundredth the size of a fly proboscis.