Genetically engineered adult stem cell cultures will be accompanying Israel’s first astronaut, Col. Ilan Ramon, on his mission aboard the U.S. space shuttle Columbia, as part of research being carried out at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
The research focuses on building new, specialized cells through the use of adult stem cells, using techniques of genetic engineering. The technology is based on isolating adult stems cells taken from bone marrow and converting them into bone, cartilage or tendon cells by introducing specific genes into them.
The research is being carried out by Prof. Dan Gazit of the Skeletal Biotechnology Laboratory at the Hebrew University Faculty of Dental Medicine. Prof. Gazit and his wife Dr. Sulma Gazit, are guests of the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Agency and will witness the launch of the space shuttle Columbia, scheduled for today.
Jerry Barrach | Hebrew University
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