Victory is Mine!

I finally got the paperwork done that I need to get an apointment with my therapist.  Which is good because I just ran out of prozac.  Yeah this is not good.  Anyway, atleast I don't have school this next week and a half, and I'm going to see my grandmother over Labor Day, which should help get me out of this darn rut.



Well as I've posted before, I have Major Depression, and while I am being medicated for it sometimes it flares up.  For example today a friend of mine from London who seemed to foreget the past 12 months of my life mentioned a person's name. I had managed to forget all about her for atleast the past 7 months.  Nice going Shaun - you just runined my whole week.


New Stem Cell Breakthrough


The Timesonline (UK)



Stem cell breakthrough to challenge Bush objections

By Nigel Hawkes, Health Editor of The Times

A stem cell breakthrough by American scientists is set to overturn ethical objections to potentially live-saving research.

They have found how to make stem cells from embryos without destroying the embryo in the process - an advance that could open the door to billions of dollars in research funding.

Stem-cell research, which specialists believe holds the key to treating many diseases, has been crippled in the US by the religious Right, backed by the Bush Administration. Federal support for such research has been banned because it involves the destruction of embryos.

Now a team at Advanced Cell Technology - a private company - has found that it is possible to create human stem cells using one or two cells from an early embryo, without doing any damage to the embryo.

In theory, the technique could be used to create both a baby and a set of immortal stem cells unique to that baby that might be used decades later to cure the baby - now adult - of diseases such as Parkinson’s or heart disease.

Much more likely, however, is that it will be used as a research technique to advance stem-cell science.

The technique is similar to pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) where one or two cells are detached from a blastocyst - a very early embryo, created in the case by in-vitro fertilisation - and tested to see if it carries a genetic mutation.

The method can prevent the passing on by parents of crippling genetic diseases.

The US team, led by Dr Robert Lanza, have now shown that a single cell harvested in this way can also be grown in culture to create stem-cell lines.

These are populations of cells that can be stored essentially for ever that have the potential to develop into any organ in the body.

“We have shown that we can not only generate stem cells without destroying the embryo, but that the remaining embryo also has the potential to go to on create a healthy blastocyst” said Dr Lanza, whose team’s research is published in Nature.

Asked if he expected the advance to satisfy President Bush, Dr Lanza said: “Well, as you know, the President objects to the fact that you would be sacrificing one life to save another, and in this instance there is no harm to the embryo.”

The team used embryos created for in vitro fertilisation, allowing them to multiply to eight or ten cells, or blastomeres, before removing one or two.

Most of these blastomeres, divided at least once more in the laboratory, and about half produced outgrowths of 50 to 100 cells including some identified as stem cells.

Two stable stem-cell lines were finally produced which continued to proliferate for more than eight months. Tests showed they had the ability to develop into the three cell categories from which all human tissue is derived.

The team concludes in Nature: “The ability to create new stem cell lines and therapies without destroying embryos would address the ethical concerns of many, and allow the generation of matched tissue for children and siblings born from transferred PGD embryos.”

British scientists, while admiring the technical skill of the experiments, doubted that they would revolutionise stem-cell research.

Professor Ian Wilmut, the scientist who cloned Dolly the sheep, said: “Cell lines have been obtained, but it is rather misleading to suggest that efficiency was equivalent to that with entire embryos.

“The authors imply that stem-cell line derivation was as efficient as it would have been if the entire embryo been cultured. It is not clear that was the case. The establishment of two lines from the equivalent of 35 high quality fresh embryos would be a disappointingly low efficiency.”

But John Harris, Professor of Bioethics at the University of Manchester, said: “The science is wonderfully interesting and important and will convince those who already accept PGD that the use of these cells is ethical.”

Professor Robin Lovell-Badge of the National Institute for Medical Research said the success rate was low, and that while it might be useful for couples undergoing PGD to have a stem cell line matched to a child for future therapeutic use, it is very unlikely to be taken up by anyone else.

“I am also unconvinced by the ethical arguments. Spare IVF embryos used to derive stem cell lines would have been destroyed anyway.”




Well -If this turns out to be true, then I'd suport it as a way for Stem Cell research to be done without destroying embryos.  This is the type of research that should be done.


Things I read (online)

Well....  this is going to be a short list.

I read TBO (Alt-History) by Stuart Slade et all, Derelict (an nBSG/Star Gate Crossover) by Chris OFarrell, Star Trek: The Great Patriotic War by Mike Nugent, and Stravo's StarCrossed (SW/ST crossover).

Musical Preferences

For those that know me this is old-hat.


Over the year mu musical tastes have changed.  When I was young I only liked Classical/Baroque music - most notably Bach, Handel, and Beethoven and later filling out with the addition of Haydn, Straus, and Tchaikovsky.

There my musical tastes stagnated for the next 6 or so years, until at the age of 14 I was introduced to a neo-classical/world group called 'Bond'.  I was hooked right away (this is Circa 2000 - and the release of their CD 'Born').

Not long after that I started working in the High School Theatre department - and started listening to showtunes.  In 2003 when my school put on Les Miserables I became addicted.  While I was only the Assistant Stage Manager/Chief Curtain I loved the show, and have since bought both the Broadway and London cast recordings.

The most recent addition to my listening repitoire has been Neil Diamond, which I picked up from my mom.


That my friends is my musical history, any questions?



A Bit of background for all of you readers:


I'm a 20 year old engineering student in Dayton, Ohio and am currently going to Sinclair Communit College, after having gone to Kettering University in Flint Michigan for a year and a half.  I eventually decided that Kettering was not the place for me (a long story that I might just tell at some point).


The title comes from the fact that I'm currently on a low dose of Prozac, and some days I can feel my grip on reality starting to slip away......


Because Lizbeth from SCN was saying "Still no update?! >__<"


So I updated it.


No more SG-1 :(  This makes me sad.

Hello World!


I'd like to welome you all to my blog.  I plan on keeping this more uptodate than my last blog (which I posted on a total of 8 times over 16 months).