Sunday, November 25, 2007

Connecticut as stem cell central??

THOMAS KAPLAN of the New York Times writes:

To Dr. David W. Rowe and researchers like him, however, using human embryonic stem cells offers the best hope of being able to apply the lessons of the mice experiment to humans, and to do it on a wide scale.


Scientists’ quarters are lined with new, modern laboratory hoods and incubators, and dozens of researchers have been hired. The result, scientists say, is that Connecticut is gaining international recognition for stem cell research.

“There’s no question that this program is going to have a huge impact, and already has, actually,” said Dr. Michael Snyder, a biology professor at Yale who received the largest single grant, $3.8 million, in the program’s first year.


Ren-He Xu left a laboratory in Wisconsin, where he said state funding was limited, to become director of UConn’s human embryonic stem cell facility. The state’s largesse “was the main reason I came here,” he said. [IPBiz notes that the breakthrough reported on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2007 was co-discovered by workers in Wisconsin.]

In New Jersey, voters in a Nov. 6 referendum rejected a proposal to borrow $450 million over 10 years to finance more stem cell research. The state has already committed $10 million for research and $270 million to build research centers. [IPBiz notes that Kaplan's reporting may be incorrect. The rejected $450 million was for the buildings; the $270 million is for the research.]


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