A brief article about growing new heart valves from bone marrow stem cells. Astounding.

Few people read the British journal Philosophical Transaction of the Royal Society, but the current issue contains details of the research by a British research team led by Sir Magdi Yacoub that may end the scourge of heart disease as we know it. ...

Unlike rigid artificial valves that just open and shut, these valves are living tissue that responds to events and changes shape as required. The heart can pump freely and unobstructed by a foreign object. There's no need to replace valves as children grow older — indeed, no need to replace them ever.

According to the World Health Organization, some 600,000 people will need replacement heart valves by 2010, and Yacoub's team may have found a way of providing them. "The ultimate goal," Yacoub said, "is to produce an 'off the shelf' product which will not produce an immune response from patients." Such tissue solves the rejection problem common in transplants and in use of artificial valves. Patients often require a lifetime of drugs to prevent post-op complications. ...

So why haven't you read about this in the newspaper or heard about it on the evening news? Perhaps because it didn't involve embryonic stem cells, or federal funding thereof, or even the election of a Democrat, like John Kerry, whose 2004 running mate, John Edwards, promised he would help people rise up out of their wheelchairs.

Aside from not producing any significant therapies, embryonic stem cells research is literal vampirism.

(HT: Instapundit and NewsBeat 1.)

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