Stem cell meeting San Francisco

I just finished watching several hours of a meeting at the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine on stem cells. Unfortunately, I missed much of the scientific presentations--just getting in while the speaker was discussing oligodendrocytes--what a mouthful, but musical. This was the research where mice with spinal cord injuries were injected with stem cells and regained much of their ability to walk.

The program was broadcast by The Science Network, whose goal is to provide science "beyond sound bites".

One very strong message I heard was that everyone needs to be involved in learning about stem cell research and providing their personal expertise as part of the cooperative venture to help the public understand what is happening and what can realistically happen in the future.

By the time the Senate or the House starts debating stem cells--such as next January or February--decisions made will be political and influenced more by the upcoming primaries for the 2006 election than by science, patients, or the general public.

Now is the time to contact your representative and voice your opinion on stem cell research. Be specific; use the information provided in this blog to help you formulate an informed letter--yes, a real letter is best--and make your opinion known.

Marie Godfrey, PhD

Genetizen's blog