An international project to co-ordinate human stem cell research across the globe was agreed at a 12-country* International Stem Cell Forum meeting chaired by the Medical Research Council (MRC) on Friday 11 July.
Stem cell therapy is a potentially revolutionary way to repair diseased and damaged body tissues with healthy new cells. But a huge amount of research is needed to understand how stem cells work and how their potential could be harnessed to treat conditions such as Parkinson’s disease and diabetes.
The project will invite researchers in international laboratories to examine new and existing stem cell ‘lines’**, using standardised tools and procedures in order to set international scientific benchmarks on the cell line characteristics in accordance with the respective national legislation. The project will be co-ordinated by Professor Peter Andrews at the Centre for Stem Cell Biology at the University of Sheffield, working with scientific representatives from the Forum countries. The data generated will be posted in a new registry of stem cell lines which will be made available on an international web site being developed for the Forum.
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