LA BioMed Medical/Research Briefs, July/August 2004


  • LA BioMed Supports Stem Cell Initiative
  • Ethnic Breast Cancer?
  • A Periodic Table For Biology

    La BioMed Supports Stem Cell Initiative

    In coalition with major health and business groups throughout California, LA BioMed has indicated its support for the California Stem Cell Bond Issue Initiative that recently qualified for November's ballot. The initiative will allocate money from a $3 billion bond to fund promising, California-based stem cell research.

    The initiative will distribute an average of $295 million per year over a 10-year period to fund stem cell research at California's universities and other advanced medical research facilities. It will fund all aspects of stem cell therapy development from basic research through clinical trials to the actual delivery of therapies to patients.

    Kenneth P. Trevett, President and CEO of LA BioMed, recently issued the following statement about the initiative:

    The stem cell initiative is a necessary step in the pursuit of scientific research because federal funding for stem cell research has been limited. Unquestionably, stem cell therapy is potentially the most important medical advance since the discovery of antibiotics. This critically important statewide initiative closes the federal funding gap and sets a new state model for advancing scientific research. From an economic standpoint, California will benefit from patents and royalties that result from the research. Construction of research facilities and new research jobs will generate millions of dollars in new tax revenues for California. More importantly, if stem cell research results in a single cure that reduces healthcare costs by just one percent, it would pay for itself several times over during the following decade and save lives along the way.

    Mr. Trevett is available to speak the merits of the stem cell initiative. To contact him, telephone or e-mail the Communications Office at 310-222-2820 or [email protected].

    Ethnic Breast Cancer?

    New research provides more explanation as to why more black women die of breast cancer than white women, despite the evidence of breast cancer incidence being higher among white women.

    According to LA BioMed investigator Rowan Chelbowski, M.D, Ph.D., results of the study show a significantly lower breast cancer incidence among black women. However, while they were less likely to develop the illness, they were also less likely to survive it. Dr. Chelbowski says: "Ethnicity had a major effect on poor prognosis cancer risk. In black women, a higher proportion of breast cancers are diagnosed with unfavorable characteristics."

    Dr. Chelbowski points out that genetic and biochemical factors may be the source for those high-grade, receptor–negative cancers. He points out that, "Black women might have a genetic profile that puts them at lower risk of getting breast cancer, but higher risk of this one specific high-grade tumor."

    Dr. Chelbowski is available by phone or e-mail at 310-222-2217 or [email protected].

    A Periodic Table For Biology

    In the June 21st edition of The Scientist, Dr. John Torday presents a stimulating case for a periodic table for biology, much in the same way that Mendeleev imparted order to the chemical elements.

    According to Dr. Torday: "Like the chemical elements, human genome data behooves biologists to systematize information and view it through a new lens… The gene pools of contemporary species have evolved not by chance, but through the process of natural selection. Therefore, we should be thinking about how to exploit this process in order to discern gene-selection patterns based on function, that is, through functional and comparative genomics."

    John Torday, PhD, is available at 310- 222-8186 or [email protected].

    Source: Eurekalert & others

    Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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