British Scientists: Producing High-quality Stem Cells

British scientists said they have produced first-class "gold standard" stem cells, which could trigger a wave of new treatments for degenerative diseases.

The stem cells from human embryos will be available to researchers for clinical trials by the end of next year, the Daily Telegraph reported Tuesday.

Previous embryonic stem cell trials in humans have used low-quality "research-grade" stem cells, which have been reprogrammed as "clinical-grade" after treatment, while new stem cells have "clinical-grade" quality when donated without costly and dangerous conversion processes, the researchers said.

Researchers at King's College, University of London, donated these stem cells to the British stem cell bank. These stem cells will be tested here to ensure that they are safe and harmless, and reach the quality that can be used in human trials.

Peter Braud, a leading member of the King's College research team, said: "As far as regenerative medicine is concerned, stem cells that can be put into clinical use at any time are the 'Holy Grail' that everyone yearns for."

According to the Daily Telegraph, these stem cells take needle-sized embryos donated by patients who are free to receive artificial insemination. They are no longer of any use to the patients themselves and will be thrown away even if they are not donated.
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