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Medical News and Perspectives
November 23/30, 2005

Advances Aim to Ease Stem Cell Concerns

JAMA. 2005;294(20):2557-2558. doi:10.1001/jama.294.20.2557

Two teams of researchers have developed alternative methods for the production of mouse embryonic stem cell lines that might one day serve to diminish the ethical debate about the origin of human embryonic stem cell lines.

In a pair of articles published October 16 in an advance online edition of Nature, the teams offer proof of principle that mouse embryonic stem cell lines can be generated without destroying or harming a viable embryo. Many critics of embryonic stem cell research object to current methods of creating embryonic stem cell lines because they require the destruction of viable embryos. But the issue of whether these new techniques will be viewed as acceptable alternatives is subject to ongoing debate.