NEW YORK (May 15, 2013)--Scientists have recovered stem cells from cloned human embryos, a longstanding goal that could lead to new treatments for such illnesses as Parkinson's disease and diabetes.
Experts called the work significant, but noted that a different, simpler technique now under development may prove more useful in the long run.
Stem cells can turn into any cell of the body and scientists are interested in using them to create transplant tissue for treating disease.
Transplants run the risk of rejection, so researchers proposed creating tissue that used the patient's own DNA through cloning, but in about a decade of trying, scientists had not been able to produce those stem cells from cloned human embryos.
The success was reported Wednesday in the journal Cell by a team based at Oregon Health & Science University.