Stem cell news is a step forward for regenerative medicine

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This morning’s pair of announcements on human stem cell research marks a step forward for regenerative medicine — the study of regrowing or repairing body parts, using the body’s own processes. Alan Russell’s 2006 TEDTalk is a fascinating roundup of what regenerative medicine could bring: revolutionary treatments for heart disease, severe burns, even the loss of a part of the body.

Human stem cells are a vital tool in this discipline — as are many other bits and pieces. Esquire magazine has an in-depth and charming story about another doctor in Alan Russell’s Pittsburgh lab, Dr. Stephen Badylak, and his work with what the magazine calls “pixie dust” … ground-up pig bladder.