Consortium for Stem Cell Therapies

New Center Creates Stem Cells and Hope for Cures

When state voters in 2008 approved a constitutional amendment allowing embryonic stem cell research, University of Michigan scientists promised to put this new freedom to work finding new treatments and cures for disease.

And in early 2009  the A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute took an important step to honor that pledge – forming the Consortium for Stem Cell Therapies.

This state-of-the-art facility, located at the U-M Medical School, already has become a national leader in the derivation and distribution of stem cell lines. 

“Embryonic stem cell research is the most important advancement in medical science since the advent of antibiotics a half century ago,” said A. Alfred Taubman, Founder and Chair of the Taubman Institute. “The creation of this Consortium positions the state of Michigan at the forefront of this promising scientific and medical frontier.”

The Consortium was among the first centers in the country to derive stem cell lines linked to a database containing genetic and medical-history information about the embryo donors and their families. This database will enable researchers to pinpoint stem cells that carry the genes for specific diseases.  It has produced four such lines and has plans for many others.

“Scientists throughout the University of Michigan and the state of Michigan will benefit from this new stem cell center,”  said. Eva Feldman, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Taubman Institute.

“We will now be able to obtain stem cell lines, specifically targeted to understand the causes of specific diseases and to develop new therapies. Can you imagine what a powerful tool these stem cell lines will be?”

The co-directors of the stem cell center, Dr. Sue O’Shea and Dr, Gary Smith, have been appointed Taubman Institute Scientists for their roles at the Consortium.

For information about the Consortium and how to inquire about donating embryos please click here.


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