Spec. Issue 2006 - Article Summary

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A perspective on stem cells as a tool for in vitro testing

Aernout Luttun* and Catherine M. Verfaillie
Department of Medicine, Stem Cell Institute, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, USA
Stem cells are on their way to becoming a central research tool in this and the next decades. Their differentiation potential promises replacement of lost tissue or provision of functional cells in degenerative diseases. Many of these treatment paradigms have been tested in animals. While stem cells have quickly moved to the frontline of research because they could revolutionise medical practice, they also could be very useful for purposes that do not require animal testing. Here we give an overview on how stem cells can be exploited as in vitro alternative to animals in addressing diverse biological questions.

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