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Stem cells through the lens of the Korean cloning scandal

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Stem cells through the lens of the Korean cloning scandal A lens through which to view general issues of stem cell research Promise of embryonic stem cells to cure ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Stem cells through the lens of the Korean cloning scandal


1
Stem cells through the lens of the Korean
cloning scandal
2
A lens through which to view general issues of
stem cell research
  • Promise of embryonic stem cells to cure disease
    and as a driver of a medical industry
  • Ethical pitfalls
  • Difficulty of the technique
  • Policy implications for Australia

3

Stem cells 101
Skin cell, limited proliferation Skin stem cell
(adult stem cells), proliferates but only makes
skin cells
Embryonic stem cells proliferate indefinitely and
make all tissues BIOLOGICAL GOLD!!!!
4
Making embryonic stem cells
5
BUT SOME TISSUES ARE MORE DIFFICULT THAN OTHERS
MOST DIFFICULT
DONE
DONE DONE
6
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7
A LONG WAY TO GO
  • TRAIN CELLS TO MAKE SPECIFIC TISSUES
  • ELIMINATE CANCER CELLS
  • GRAFT REJECTION???
  • THERAPEUTIC CLONING PROVIDES MATCHED TISSUES,
    HENCE THE GREAT PROMISE

8
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9
Cattle cloning about 10 success rate
10
In Feb 2004, Hwang announces first success
  • But it was a very qualified success
  • Couldn't prove it was a clone
  • Only cumulus cell
  • Only if from same egg and nucleus donor?
  • 242 eggs!

Cumulus cell
11
Woo Suk Hwangs group dazzle the world
May 2005 its a go-er! -Cloned from skin cells
of men, women and children -increased success
rate over 10 fold (17 eggs per cell line),
practiced with cow eggs!
12
Astonishing that no-one suspected
  • Korean work ethic 24/7
  • Supportive policy and funding
  • Technical prowess borne of lifetimes use of
    steel chopsticks

13
Scientific smoking guns
  • Proofs that they were embryonic stem cells
    visual appearance, marker proteins, teratomas

14
Marker proteins look good
15
Teratomas for three of the cell lines
16
Spot the duplication?
17
Are they cloned stem cells?
  • Compare DNA fingerprints of donor skin cells and
    stem cell lines

18
DNA Fingerprints
19
Policy implications
  • Women were exploited (suffered side-effects some
    did it for money)
  • Scientists behaved dishonestly (now also an issue
    of missing millions)
  • Ban the technique?

20
Legislation that permits advance while preventing
transgressions
  • TC will not be used to produce customized
    tissuesits too hard
  • For model diseases its still a worthy goal

21
Spinal Muscular Atrophy-a case in point
One in 8000 births, biggest genetic killer of
kids under 2 yo Disease causes death of motor
neurons Use Therapeutic cloning to make cell
lines for screening drugs
22
Test 100,000 compounds a day on these model
patients
Put cloned cells to work tomorrow Many diseases a
mystery genes and environment ALS 95 out of
the blue, MN die off No real animal models
Cloned cells from patients could be first real
models to study the disease ES cells (not adult
stem cells) can be made into Motor Neurons (H.
Wychterle 2002, Cell)
23
Unscientific debate
  • Pick and choose notions of research are
    misguided
  • Furfies adult stem cells have more runs on the
    board. Only in bone marrow transplants and skin
    grafts
  • Novel applications remain unproven and highly
    contentious.
  • Common sense in exploration success comes from
    following as many paths as possible
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