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US Starting Stem Cell Trial For Blindness


A US company will test human embryonic stem cells to treat blindness in a bid to examine how the controversial procedure works in humans. Advanced Cell Technology, a California-based biotech company, announced the planned test on Monday, the second such clinical trial.

Bob Lanza, chief scientific officer at Advanced Cell Technology said that the process has been tested on rats and mice and has been found to halt the progressive disease without causing tumors or other side effects. “These cells have been really performing quite spectacularly in the animals. If we can see that in the human patients we will hit a home run here,” Lanza said.

The trial was allowed to go ahead after the US Food and Drug Administration cleared its application to start a phase I study.

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