Pro: Melton, a Harvard cell biologist, transformed one type of pancreas cell in mice to an insulin-producing cell that could combat diabetes. This is the first time that researchers have directly changed the function of one type of adult cell into another without using controversial embryonic stem cells.
Con: He's quick to caution that this approach is not yet ready for people. And if it ever becomes possible in humans, cell reprogramming may only offer half-a-cure for diabetes: replacing the defective insulin-producing cells still won't address what causes the cells to stop working in the first place.
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