Adam and Steve can procreate!

December 9, 2010

Thanks to the scientific miracle of stem cell research, researchers have discovered how to create a mouse from two fathers, thus raising the possibility that human women will one day be useless. I keed. I keed.

Not only does this mean gay couples may one day have biological children that are the genetic offspring of both parents but it also could help us to preserve endangered species, improving livestock breeds, and advancing human assisted reproductive technology.

And now for the non-English version of this story:

In the work reported today, the Behringer team manipulated fibroblasts from a male (XY) mouse fetus to produce an induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell line. About one percent of iPS cell colonies grown from this XY cell line spontaneously lost the , resulting in XO cells. The XO iPS cells were injected into blastocysts from donor female mice. The treated blastocysts were transplanted into surrogate mothers, which gave birth to female XO/XX chimeras having one from the original male mouse fibroblast.

The female chimeras, carrying oocytes derived from the XO cells, were mated with normal male mice. Some of the offspring were male and female mice that had genetic contributions from two fathers.

According to the authors, “Our study exploits iPS cell technologies to combine the alleles from two males to generate male and female progeny, i.e. a new form of mammalian reproduction.”

And in language even I can understand:  two daddies.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Breasts key to regenerative medicine?

November 4, 2010

Breasts, is there anything they can’t do?

According to Chris Calhoun, CEO of San Diego-based biotech company Cytori Therapeutics, leading to medical breakthroughs in tissue engineering is not on that list. As you may know, breasts are mostly made of adipose (fat) tissue. But what I personally didn’t know is that that adipose tissue is loaded with useful stem cells capable enhancing, healing, and rebuilding injured or damaged organs.

As Calhoun puts it:

“It’s the first practical cell therapy.” He pauses. “And it’s breasts.”

His plan is to put stem cells from breasts on the market to get around the public controversy over embryonic stem cells.

Enhanced by Zemanta

‘Firefly’ stem cells may help repair damaged hearts

September 29, 2010

‘Firefly’ stem cells may help repair damaged hearts. No, these aren’t cells from actual fireflies but cells so named for their ability to glow like fireflies and contains the same enzyme that makes fireflies glow. But I think the coolest part of this story is this:

The “firefly” stem cells glow brighter and brighter as they develop into healthy heart muscle, allowing doctors to track whether and where the stem cells are working.

So essentially we can now track the stem cells and see exactly what they’re doing. Kinda takes all the mystery out of it.

Enhanced by Zemanta