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Skin Cells Can Become Embryonic Stem Cells

The discovery that human body cells can be used as stem cells is creating buzz in the scientific community. Experts say the development will likely transform research; in the political world, some say it will end the debate over the need to use human embryos.

Host Madeleine Brand talks about the finding with NPR's science correspondent Joe Palca. And Alex Cohen discusses the moral and political impacts of this discovery with bioethicist Yuval Levin of the Ethics and Public Policy Center.

Levin, who advised President Bush on the stem cell issue, said the president has been hoping for this kind of alternative to embryonic stem cell research.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Madeleine Brand
Madeleine Brand is the host of NPR’s newest and fastest-growing daily show, Day to Day. She conducts interviews with newsmakers (Iraqi politicians, US senators), entertainment figures (Bernardo Bertolluci, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Ricky Gervais), and the everyday people affected by the news (an autoworker laid off at GM, a mother whose son was killed in Iraq).
Joe Palca is a science correspondent for NPR. Since joining NPR in 1992, Palca has covered a range of science topics — everything from biomedical research to astronomy. He is currently focused on the eponymous series, "Joe's Big Idea." Stories in the series explore the minds and motivations of scientists and inventors. Palca is also the founder of NPR Scicommers – A science communication collective.
Alex Cohen is the reporter for NPR's fastest-growing daily news program, Day to Day where she has covered everything from homicides in New Orleans to the controversies swirling around the frosty dessert known as Pinkberry.