New studies in stem cell research
can turn skin cells into nerve cells
Yeah, that's what I need. My skin thinking for itself.
My concern is the costs of such research versus the number of patients affected. From the text of one article:
Around the world, one or two people per 100,000 develop ALS each year, which is marked by a wasting away of certain spinal cord nerve cells called motor neurons. The single-gene form of ALS studied by (the researcher's) team affects only about 2% of ALS sufferers, while the vast majority of ALS cases are sporadic.
There are about 300 million people in the US. That means about 300-600 Americans are afflicted with ALS
each year. If the form of ALS
the team studied affects only two percent of those
people, that's 6-12 people a year. Six to twelve people. Out of three hundred million.
And people wonder why health care is so expensive for the rest of us. Who do you think pays for all this research? You and I, as patients, that's who. My question then for all these researchers is, Why don't you invest in studies to help a greater majority of people affected with my
condition: Lack of motivation to channel the effort I expend in blogging towards more productive endeavors like exercise.
Oh, and if the statistics in the above study were not enough, here's more:
But the current technique of inserting genes with viruses has potential cancerous side effects, making transplanting these cells into humans too risky.
Maybe after the hundred million dollars on helping those six people are spent, they can spend a few more million to take care of the side effects.