Re : Life Span Extension

From: Joao Pedro de Magalhaes (
Date: Thu Nov 15 2001 - 07:18:25 MST

I defend that stem cells are a very promising approach in terms of
anti-aging treatments -- they might be useful to diseases ranging from
neurodegenerative diseases, cancer and perhaps even AIDS. I was merely
pointing that the first treatments using embryonic cells did not yield very
good results. It was a warning that just because a technology is promising,
it doesn't mean we should expect immediate practical applications.

>From: "Joao Pedro de Magalhaes" <>
>> Injecting embryonic cells in old persons is an old treatment but its
>> effects, apart from treatment in Parkinson's disease, are negligible. I
>> remember there was a Swiss clinic using the procedure as an overall
>> anti-aging method but they were swindlers.
>IIRC, embryonic stem cells have been used to treat Alzheimer's disease.
>Here's an item about stem cells and Huntington's disease.
>Stem Cells Proposed to Treat Huntington's Disease
>November 30, 2000; French researchers at INSERM (The French equivalent of the
>NIH) have found in a four year study that they have succeeded in reversing the
>course of this Huntington's Disease in three of five patients by implanting
>Embryonic Stem Cells in their brains. The results will be published in Lancet
>next month. A recent flurry of research has shown -- at least in mice (See
>story above) -- that stem cells from many sites throughout the body can be
>induced to turn into viable neurons. If these stem cells could be shown to be
>as effective as fetal cells, it would greatly increase the supply of tissue
>available for transplant and would obviate the need for immunosuppressive
>drugs. See Thomas H. Maugh, II, "Treatment for Huntington's Disease Shows
>Promise," p. A21, The Los Angeles Times (November 30, 2000).

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