Monday, March 06, 2006

Michael Fumento nails CBS on stem cells

CBS's Stem Cell Shenanigans

Fumento notes that he wrote a year ago about "the almost total disregard of adult stem cells (ASCs) and the glorification of “miraculous” human embryonic stem cells (ESCs) -- notwithstanding that the adult ones treat over 80 human diseases while embryonics haven’t even made it to human testing."

As examples, Fumento cites two 60 Minutes stories, hosted respectively by Ed Bradley and Leslie Stahl.

Fumento asks Bradley and Stahl why, if ESC is so promising, why we're not seeing any progress. And he answers his own question: "ESCs are so terribly complicated to work with it that took almost half a century to establish that line. Further, they remain terribly hard to work with. That’s why despite all the cures and treatments we have with ASCs and the nearly 1000 clinical trials currently using them, there have been no ESC clinical trials. Nor will there be until, ESC researchers work out “minor” difficulties with their alleged miracle workers."

ASCs usually come from the recipient himself, so they're no prone to rejection. And they don't form the cancerous teratomas or "monster tumors" that embryonic stem cells can cause.

Bradley, Fumento pointed out, "focused on an experiment in which ESCs allowed paralyzed rats to walk again. Forget that scientists using ASCs had the same success almost a decade ago, or that recently South Korean scientists used ASCs to enable a paraplegic woman (not a female rat) to walk again."

Fumento goes on to pick apart the absurd and unsupportable claims Bradley and Stahl made, and gives an overview of the actual treatments being done right now with adult stem cells.

As Fumento said, "CBS either knew or should have known about all of these developments, yet it mentioned none. Like most of the media, it remains obsessed with promoting a will o’ the wisp science while ignoring an alternative that’s been saving lives for decades and also avoids ethical concerns. The network needs to have somebody in charge who can restore a higher level of honesty. You know, like Dan Rather."

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