The new technique, published in the journal Cell Stem Cell offers major improvements. The method does not involve dangerous genetic alterations, and is almost twice as fast and up to 100 times more efficient than the standard method used to turn cells back to an embryonic-like state. The induced pluripotent stem cells, or iPS cells, that are formed more closely resemble embryonic stem cells than those made using standard methods.
Still, The Globe quotes scientists saying that the new research doesn't "negate the need for human embryonic stem cell research." This week, a federal court lifted a ban on using federal funds for such research while an appeal is underway.
This program aired on September 30, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.