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Stem Cell Research: Share Your Views about the Future

April 16 2008

Venue: Quincentenary Hall, Surgeons' Hall Complex, Edinburgh EH8 9DW

Organised by: Sarah Parry, Nicola Marks and the 'Talking about Stem Cells' reserach team from Innogen and the Scottish Stem Cell Network.

Come and discuss your views on the different sources of stem cells used in research and let your voice be heard

Stem cell research involves using different types of cells and tissues, since stem cells can be derived from a number of different sources. Each source can raise issues regarding therapeutic potential, risk or ethical and social concerns. Currently, stem cell research uses:

  • Adult tissues (for example bone marrow)

  • Human embryos created for IVF treatment but no longer required

  • Human eggs (these can be used in the creation of ‘cloned’ embryos taking an egg, removing its nucleus and inserting in its place the nucleus from a cell, such as a skin cell)

  • Animal-human embryos (involving a mix of animal and human material, for example by creating ‘cloned’ as above, but combining an animal egg with a human nucleus)

  • Human fetuses (from which particular cells are used to derive stem cells)

  • Animal cells and tissues

Findings from our ongoing project “Talking Stem Cells: The Social Dynamics of Public Engagement in Stem Cell Research” show that people hold diverse views on these different sources of stem cells, how they might be used and how resources should be allocated between them.

To follow up from this research, we are organising an interactive event on the sources of stem cells, and would like to invite you to come along and help us explore your views in more detail. There will be the opportunity to view posters on different types of stem cells and to interact with a range of others, including research scientists, clinicians, patients and interested members of the public. You will also be asked to ‘decide for yourself’ which source(s) of stem cells have the most merit by casting a secret vote on where resources should be allocated.

There will also be a panel of experts, each championing a particular stem cell source:

Professor Richard Anderson (University of Edinburgh)
Professor Paul De Sousa (University of Edinburgh)
Professor Stephen Minger (Kings College London)
Professor Phil Newsome (University of Birmingham)
Dr Jenny Nichols (University of Cambridge)
Professor Austin Smith (University of Cambridge)

Chair : Mr Tom Morton (Scottish writer, broadcaster and musician)

Download the event flyer - Stem Cell Research: Share Your Views about the Future,2827,en.t4.html