Why Can't We Regenerate?

A video presentation from the TED conference back in 2006 has been doing the rounds over the past couple of days; it's worth your time, for all of being dated. "Alan Russellis a professor of surgery -- and of chemical engineering. In crossing the two fields, he is expanding our palette of treatments for disease, injury and congenital defects. We can treat symptoms, he says, or we can replace our damaged parts with bioengineered tissue. As he puts it: 'If newts can regenerate a lost limb, why can't we?' ... [he] leads an ambitious biomedicine program that explores tissue engineering, stem cell research, biosurgery and artificial and biohybrid organs. [He] studies regenerative medicine, a breakthrough way of treating disease and injury by helping the body to rebuild itself. He shows how engineered tissue that 'speaks the body's language' has helped a man regrow his lost fingertip, how stem cells can rebuild damaged heart muscle, and how cell therapy can regenerate the skin of burned soldiers. This new medicine comes just in time, Russell says -- our aging population, with its steeply rising medical bills, will otherwise (and soon) cause a crisis in health care systems around the world." That crisis has far more to do with socialism than aging - only under a socialist system can a greater need and greater ability to meet that need be turned into a disaster - but advancing medicine brings great benefits for those free enough to research and use it.

Link: http://blog.ted.com/2007/07/why_cant_we_gro_1.php

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