Media Release: Stem cell experts want public questions

THE Scottish Stem Cell Network (SSCN) is holding a special public meeting in Aberdeen next week (Tuesday, October 14) to answer questions on the research and future use of stem cells as potential treatments for major diseases and injuries.

And members of the public are being encouraged to submit questions in advance as well as on the night, which will follow a ‘Question Time’ format.

The SSCN, which brings together scientists, academics, clinicians and businesses to help in the advance of stem cell biology towards new treatments for degenerative diseases, is constantly working to inform public debate.

“It is one of our key objectives to engage with the public as clearly and fully as possible as Scotland’s established centres of excellence in stem cell technology make progress with research that, hopefully, will lead to clinical reality,” said its executive director, Dr Marilyn Robertson.

“Scotland is at the forefront of ground-breaking advances in stem cell technology and we fully understand that ethical and technical issues that can create public distrust, misconceptions and misguided expectations constantly need to be addressed.

“We have held similar meetings previously and we hope that members of the public will come along and quiz our panel of experts, many of whom are striving to improve the rate at which laboratory research translates into therapeutic benefits for patients affected by such devastating conditions as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, diabetes, stroke, multiple sclerosis and sight loss.

“Events like this play an important role in the SSCN effort to inform and involve the public at large. Those with an interest in stem cell research will have an opportunity to discuss and voice their opinion on how it should advance.”

Any questions should be emailed to:

The public meeting, ‘Stem Cells – Your Questions Answered’, takes place at the University of Aberdeen’s Polwarth Building at Foresterhill – to the rear of the Institute of Medical Sciences – on Tuesday, October 14 from 6 – 7.30 p.m.

The event will be chaired by Sir Graeme Catto, chair of the SSCN and on the panel of experts are: Hugh Ilyine (independent consultant, Member of SSCN Advisory Board); Dr Clare Blackburn (group leader MRC Centre for Regenerative Medicine) and Prof Charles ffrench-Constant (head of the Edinburgh University Centre for Translational Research)

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