Adult vs. embryonic stem cells

Everyday I scan many pages of information on stem cells, including the Google Alerts I get 5-10 times a day. Sometimes, I get fired up enough to send my own comment to an article or opinion. Yesterday, I responded to an opinion claiming that 65 diseases can be successfully treated with adult stem cells and referring to an article in the Washington Post. Since I have been diligently exploring the comparison of adult and embryonic stem cells, I read the referenced article only to find no reference to 65 diseases. My opinion was posted (I guess), but I received no response to my comment that statements with faulty or no corroboration are what make ordinary people so confused about stem cell research.

Today, while following leads, I tripped over a site I should have found long ago (http://www.stemcellresearch.com). For some reason, it didn't turn up on Google or Yahoo searches. Anyway, lo and behold, the right side of the screen has 65 vs. 0 for adult stem cells vs. embryonic stem cells. The list of diseases/conditions successfully treated by adult stem cell transplants looked very familiar and, as I linked to the reference list, I knew why. These were the very references sent to me as her own by the head of an organization opposed to embryonic stem cell research. Funny thing, none of the pages had their original footers identifying the real source of the references.

We at Geneforum have been using a blog--rather than just posting chunks of information or providing a list of today's 15 news releases for several reasons. Among them is the comments capability. Anyone reading the blogs can comment or ask questions. Another is to provide an experts analysis of the voluminous, often contradictory, information available primarily through the Internet. I try, as much as possible, to give you the source of the information unless its available from many different sources. And what I write, unless I add a statement such as taken directly from, is original. I read, dig, and read some more until I am fairly confident that what I am posting is accurate and untainted as much as possible by my personal opinions.

Thanks for reading, and please refer others to this site.

Marie Godfrey, PhD

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