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Science File | IN BRIEF

Stem-Cell Advance Could Treat Blindness

September 25, 2004|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Corporate researchers working outside controversial federal restraints said Thursday that they had engineered human stem cells that they believe could be used to repair eyes.

The team at Advanced Cell Technology in Massachusetts worked with stem cells taken from human embryos made by a team at Harvard University, and coaxed them to form retinal cells.

"We believe these new retinal cells could be used to treat blindness and may, in fact, be one of the very first applications of embryonic stem-cell technology," said Dr. Robert Lanza, Advanced Cell Technology's scientific director.

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