BOSTON, Aug. 8 (UPI) -- U.S. scientists say they've created a set of new stem cell lines to explore 10 genetic disorders in cell and tissue types as they develop in lab cultures.
Led by Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator George Daley of Children's Hospital Boston, the researchers converted cells from individuals with such disorders as muscular dystrophy, juvenile diabetes and Parkinson's and Huntington's diseases into stem cells with the same genetic errors.
"Researchers have long wanted to find a way to move a patient's disease into the test tube, to develop cells that could be cultured into the many tissues relevant to diseases of the blood, the brain and the heart, for example," Daley said.
"Now, we have a way to do just that -- to derive pluripotent cells from patients with disease, which means the cells can make any tissue and can grow forever," he added. "This enables us to model thousands of conditions using classical cell culture techniques."
The scientists said they'll make the disease-specific stem cell strains available to scientists worldwide through a facility funded by the Harvard Stem Cell Institute.
The research appears in the journal Cell.