Science  25 Apr 2014:
Vol. 344, Issue 6182, pp. 347

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  1. New Stem Cells a Genetic Match for Adults

    Scientists are a step closer to developing replacement tissue that won't be rejected by a patient's immune system. Researchers have created human embryonic stem cells carrying the DNA of specific adults. Theoretically, such stem cells can form any of the body's cell types and could be used in new treatments for Parkinson's disease, diabetes, and many other diseases.

    Researchers, led by Young Gie Chung of the Research Institute for Stem Cell Research in Los Angeles, California, reported creating the stem cells using skin cells from one 35-year-old male and one 75-year-old male online on 17 April in Cell Stem Cell. The scientists built on the work of a team led by Shoukhrat Mitalipov of the Oregon Health & Science University in Portland. Mitalipov's group removed the DNA-containing nucleus from human eggs and replaced it with skin cells from infants and fetuses, a technique called somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT). SCNT was used to clone Dolly the sheep in 1996—but rather than clone humans, researchers take the early-stage embryos that result from SCNT and derive stem cells. The new study's team showed that with minor tweaks, this technique also works for adults.

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