DAVID GRANOVSKY

LIONS CLUB HAS MARK

In STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS on February 10, 2009 at 6:51 pm
MARK ANDERSON

DR MARK ANDERSON - U of IOWA

Advocate for stem cell research speaks to local Noon Lions Club

By ANDREW POTTER, TIMES-REPUBLICAN -POSTED: February 10, 2009

Dr. Mark Anderson of the University of Iowa spoke about stem cell research to the Noon Lions Club Monday at the American Legion hall.

Dr. Mark Anderson of the University of Iowa believes there is bright future for stem cell research.

He hopes what has become more of a political issue in recent years will go back to a focus on the science side and will eventually allow more American researchers to work with stem cells.

“Stem cells provide hope to people who don’t have any hope,” said Anderson, who spoke to the Marshalltown Noon Lions Club Monday at the American Legion hall.

The director of cardiology at the Department of Internal Medicine at UI pointed out research in animals has proven the potential stem cells can provide, whether that be replacing damaged tissue or rebuilding organs.

He described research in which a heart was rebuilt in a rat using stem cells.

“The thought that an individual can grow their own heart is very exciting,” Anderson said.

The issue many have is using embryonic cells, which many feel is already a life.

He said there are several ways to get embryonic cells and in the future they may be able to create them in ways that do not involve an embryo.

Legislation in recent years has curtailed funding and drew a line on what types of stem cell research can be done. Anderson said this has been one of the reasons the United States trails other countries such as Japan, China and Germany in stem cell research.

The research is not without drawbacks and Anderson pointed out one of the potential downsides are stem cells that are put into the body and don’t “follow the script” and end up being cancerous.

Don Crowley, vice president of the Lions Club, said there had been conversations about the stem cell issue among the members of the group and they brought in Anderson to inform them about what is going on in the field.

“This was a subject that was fascinating and interesting and that our community should learn about,” he said.

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via Advocate for stem cell research speaks to local Noon Lions Club – Times Republican.

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