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Stem-cell breakthrough May 08, 2002

  1. bonkers

    4,330 posts.
    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5744,4280492%5E1702,00.html
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    Stem-cell breakthrough
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    May 08, 2002
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    AUSTRALIAN scientists may be just a year away from clinical trials of a treatment for Parkinson's Disease using adult stem cells.
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    In an Australian first, researchers at Melbourne's Peter MacCallum Cancer Institute have successfully grown adult neural stem cells over the last three weeks.
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    The cells were grown from a piece of brain tissue taken from an epilepsy patient.
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    Association Professor Paul Simmons and his Melbourne research team hope to finish the pre-clinical trials of the process within the next year.
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    The treatment they hope to trial involves growing brain cells from tissue taken from patients with Parkinson's disease.
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    Professor Simmons said pre-clinical studies here will validate the findings of the researchers in Los Angeles who developed the therapy.
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    The LA research, conducted at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre, has apparently cured the only patient in the world to undergo such treatment for Parkinson's disease.
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    http://www.pmci.unimelb.edu.au/research/stem_cell_biology.asp
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    Stem Cell Biology
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    This stem cell program is directed towards understanding the fundamental mechanisms that contribute to the regulation of stem cells in normal adult tissues.Somatic stem cells exist within multiple tissues and organs, including bone marrow, skin, gut, liver and brain.Due to their unique capacity for self-replication and differentiation, stem cells are able to maintain their numbers within tissues and regenerate the tissue following damage or insult.
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    The Haemopoiesis and Stromal Stem Cell Groups have made major contributions to understanding haemopoietic stem cells (HSC), including the development of a novel means to identify HSC and analyse stem cell homing,lodgement and turnover.The Epithelial Stem Cell and Stromal Stem Cell Groups have also developed techniques for prospectively isolating stem cells for the epidermis and for the stromal system of the bone marrow.Studies on the myb proto-oncogene in the Differentiation Laboratory have revealed that myb is also required for the development of colonic epithelial crypts and is over-expressed in colon cancer.
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    http://www.theage.com.au/news/2001/05/08/FFXX7V0UFMC.html
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    Peter Mac suspends tumor study By BRETT FOLEYMEDICAL REPORTER
    Tuesday 8 May 2001
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    A breast cancer study at Peter MacCallum Cancer Institute has been suspended after it was found that researchers had not sought consent from patients to store their tissue for research.
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    Researchers kept tissue from 54 women without their consent. Hospital officials yesterday began contacting the women to inform them of the breach in protocol and seek retrospective consent.
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    The women had tumors removed at the hospital during the past two years. The tissue was put in frozen storage so researchers could study the genetic markers that are thought to cause some breast cancers.
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    Peter MacCallum's chief executive officer David Hillis said yesterday that it had contacted about half of the 54 women to explain the "unfortunate situation".
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    Dr Hillis said that, once informed, most of them were happy for the excess tissue to be used if it advanced breast cancer research.
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    "The institute greatly regrets what has happened," he said. "This resulted from over-enthusiasm of researchers who didn't have all the administrative plans in place.
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    "This breach will never happen here again and there were no issues of maliciousness or intent involved."
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    The breach was discovered when the institute commissioned an independent review of its research guidelines after concerns were raised about the lack of consent in other medical procedures last year.
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    The women had all signed a surgery consent form. A small portion of the tumor is kept for diagnostic testing and the remainder is usually thrown away. In this case researchers had been given approval by the hospital's ethics committee to keep the remaining tissue for research, Dr Hillis said.
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    However, in July 1998 the institute adopted a system that demanded separate consent if researchers were planning to store tissue long term for research other than diagnostic testing. Dr Hillis said the researchers had failed to seek this consent and had committed a "technical breach" of policy.
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    "Patient consent is an absolute prerequisite for any research involving human tissue," he said.
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    The women were offered information sessions or counselling.
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    Research would not continue until all 54 women had been contacted. If any disapproved of their tissue being kept, it would be destroyed, Dr Hillis said.
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