We’ve been hearing for years about how stem cells could do everything from cure Parkinson’s Disease to spinal cord injuries, but it’s just so hard to grow the dang things for research. They don’t grow quickly on the surface we currently use for growing, plus that surface is made from mouse embryo cells, which means the stem cells would cause an immune reaction if injected into a human. (Also, “mouse embryo cells” is just an incredibly creepy thing to say.)
Well, MIT researchers have found the answer with a new synthetic growing surface that lets them grow millions of stem cells for as long as three months. What’s more, it’ll allow single cells to make identical colonies of themselves, allowing scientists to identify cells with individual traits.
And most important of all to the scientists? They can finally stop dicing up those mouse embryos.