Stem Cell Researcher Awarded MacArthur Fellowship
The MacArthur Foundation today announced its annual list of 25 fellows. Recipients of the award get $500,000 to spend over the next five years with no strings attached. Many of the fellows are distinguished scientists working in fields as diverse as plant genetics, astrophysics, and epidemiology.
One neuroscientist, Sally Temple, works extensively with stem cells. Temple is the scientific director of the New York Neural Stem Cell Institute and her work “traces the mechanisms by which embryonic progenitor cells divide into highly specialized neurons and support cells,” according to the foundation. She describes the work in her own words in this video:
Interestingly, her studies suggest that:
[T]he limited success to date of embryonic stem cell transplants to repair neural damage could be due to introduction of stem cells at the wrong stage of development; it may be that progenitor cells further along in their differentiation will prove more effective.
As MacArthur fellowships are awarded based on recommendations from peers, this sends a clear signal that Temple’s line of research is groundbreaking work.
Today in Madison, Wisconsin, stem cell researchers and advocates are discussing the fast-expanding field at the fourth World Stem Cell Summit. To learn more about the state of policymaking and research, we spoke with the co-chairs in a roundtable discussion.
A half million dollars will help Temple’s research, but to allow all Americans to reap the benefits of stem cell research, the federal government needs to expand access to funding and resources.
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