From Life News (bolds are mine):
A leading biotech firm that came under fire for claiming to have created a new technique to obtain embryonic stem cells without destroying human life has modified its claims. In a new paper submitted to the scientific journal Nature, Advanced Cell Technology confirmed previous LifeNews.com reports indicating the assertions were false.
In an addendum to the original report, ACT admitted that none of the 16 human embryos in the original experiments survived the attempt at creating a new technique.
ACT also clarified its own claims about it’s research, now saying that it “might” be possible to obtain stem cells from a human embryo without killing it.
In the Thursday paper, ACT went on to say that “none of the biopsied [human] embryos” involved in the research survived.
Ultimately, ACT scientists extracted two embryonic stem cell lines from the 16 human embryos but, like other methods of obtaining the cells, the ACT methods resulted in the killing of all 16 human beings.
Though the new paper establishes that one cell from a human embryo, called a blastomere, could generate embryonic stem cells, the ACT team destroyed the human embryos by using several cells from them.
Even if the ACT team had used just one cell from each embryo, more human embryos would have to be used and likely eventually destroyed.
Nature requested the addendum after ACT and Nature press releases in late August misstated the results of the study and claimed the new technique solved the ethical problems that pro-life advocates have with embryonic stem cell research.
….. Though the original ACT paper had no flaws — it admitted that all of the human embryos were destroyed and a new technique to obtain embryonic stem cells without destroying human life was not created — the press statements about the paper were misleading.
Nature later apologized for the wrongful claims in its own press releases on the ACT research.
Instead of apologizing for its own false assertions in its press release, ACT stood by its claims in media interviews and sent a threatening letter to LifeNews.com after the pro-life news service exposed ACT’s false statements.
Life News’ coverage of the threatening letter ACT sent to it is here. Notice that the company hasn’t chosen to pick on other publications or individuals who either carried criticism of or spoke out about the differences between the actual research results and the company’s press release. Those would include the Washington Post, the Philadelphia Inquirer, Sens. Arlen Specter and Tom Harkin, and “many in the field” — a phrase used by Nature Magazine to describe the outcry over ACT’s hyped-up claims (all except the WaPo are ID’s at the Life News link about the threatening letter. No — ACT decided to pick on a little not-for-profit online newsletter.
Apparently ACT’s chairman wrapped up his letter to Life News with this specific threat:
Caldwell finished his letter by threatening LifeNews.com if it did not pull the supposedly erroneous news reports and promised to monitor the pro-life news service’s further coverage of ACT’s research.
Life News has, of course, not pulled anything, and remains the best source of fact-based prolife news anywhere.
From here, it looks like ACT’s management is acting like a bunch of shameless creeps with lots to hide.
Even after the runup and rundown in share price that followed the press release, ACT’s stock (as of Monday’s close, 88 cents a share) is between roughly 2 to 3-1/2 times where it was before the release (between 25 cents and 40 cents), making quite a few insiders quite a bit better off than they were previously. The basis for the company’s valuation appears to be possibly-duped shareholders believing the company’s hype. If (emphasis “if”) it becomes clear that there’s no justification for the enthusiasm, shareholders will have to look out below, and management will be looking over its shoulders at the regulators and litigants pursuing them.
Selected Previous Posts:
- Sept. 1 — Advanced Cell Technology Update
- Aug. 28 — An Across-the-Board Chorus Blasts Advanced Cell Technologyâ€™s Claims
- Aug. 27 — Paging the SEC: Investigate Advanced Cell Technology