NZ Herald: Stem cell research: the man behind the monster

The NZ Herald’s Geoff Cumming writes about Professor Sir Martin Evans, a Nobel prize-winning expert in stem cell research, covering his background, his work, and his view on the subject.

An excerpt: (read in full here)

“He has spent a good many of his 69 years in a white coat in a laboratory, peering at mice – or, more correctly, stem cells taken from mice embryos. Softly spoken, he is not at all chest-beating about the embryonic stem-cell and gene targeting research which led to his Nobel Prize for medicine.

“His field is a hugely controversial one, regularly targeted for associations with genetic modification, chimeras (creatures developed by mixing animal cells) and ethical and religious concerns about taking cells from human embryos for research. Then there are those who worry about the poor mice.

“Yet Evans is defensive about none of this, even if he’s not one to over-hype the potential of stem-cell research to treat degenerative brain diseases, spinal cord damage, heart disease, cancer, diabetes …”