Researchers have used altered nuclear transfer (ANT) to generate pluripotent murine embryonic stem (ES) cells from blastocysts inherently unable to implant in the uterus. Scientists hope the findings, published in the October 16 issue of Nature, will provide ES cell researchers with a technique that sidesteps the destruction of embryos, triggering ethical controversies.

"This is just one possible approach using ANT, but this study provides the scientific basis for the conversation that could lead us to resolve our nation's impasse over ES cell research," William Hurlbut, from Stanford University, Ca., told The Scientist. Hurlbut was the first to conceive of the idea of ANT, but did not participate in the study.

In another study, published in the same issue of Nature, researchers report using a cell biopsy technique for diagnosing genetic defects to extract ES cells without diminishing the embryo's viability, another technique...

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to more than 35 years of archives, as well as TS Digest, digital editions of The Scientist, feature stories, and much more!
Already a member?