7/19/2011 8:38:02 AM
Oncogenes are generally thought to be genes that, when mutated, change healthy cells into cancerous tumor cells. Scientists at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California (USC) have proven that those genes also can change normal cells into stem-like cells, paving the way to a safer and more practical approach to treating diseases like multiple sclerosis and cancer with stem cell therapy. "The reality may be more complicated than people think," said Jiang F. Zhong, Ph.D., assistant professor of pathology at the Keck School. "What is a stem cell gene? What is a cancer gene? It may be the same thing."
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