Controversy doesn't derail stem cell progress USA Today - By Dan Vergano, - May 18, 2009
Almost unnoticed amid the revival of stem cell politics this year, progress and peril in the science behind the controversy continues to hum along.
Human embryonic stem cells, with their ability to turn into every kind of organ tissue in the body, have tantalized biomedical researchers ever since their 1998 isolation by University of Wisconsin scientists. Organ replacement tissues free from immune system rejection, grown from embryonic stem cells or from more recently discovered "induced" stem cells grown from skin cells, have been envisioned for a decade.
"At this moment, the full promise of stem cell research remains unknown, and it should not be overstated," President Obama said in March while announcing a lifting of the previous administration's restrictions of federal funding on human embryonic stem cell research. He added, "Scientists believe these tiny cells may have the potential to help us understand, and possibly cure, some of our most devastating diseases and conditions."
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