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The transplant recipients will be children who suffer from a rare, fatal genetic disorder.
The Food and Drug Administration said that doctors at Stanford University Medical Center can begin the testing on six children afflicted with Batten disease, a degenerative malady that renders its young victims blind, speechless and paralyzed before it kills them.
An internal Stanford review board must still approve the test, a process that could take weeks.
The stem cells to be transplanted in the brain arenâ€™t human embryonic stem cells, which are derived from days-old embryos. Instead, the cells are immature neural cells that are destined to turn into the mature cells that makeup a fully formed brain.
Parkinsonâ€™s disease patients and stroke victims have received transplants of fully formed brain cells before, but the malleable brain cells involved here have never before been implanted.
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