In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

After 15 years and $150 million Geron stops experimenting on human embryonic stem cells

By Steve Johnson

Pioneering company is turning attention elsewhere

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) Menlo Park, Calif.-based Geron, the first company ever permitted to test human embryonic stem cells on people, announced Monday it is halting the studies to focus on developing two cancer drugs.

Researchers have long held out hope that embryonic stem cells would be the key to treating a variety of ailments because they can turn into any type of tissue in the body and be reproduced in vast quantities in laboratories. But studies to develop treatments from them have been subject to delays in part because of ethical concerns surrounding the cells, which are harvested from discarded 3-to-5-day-old embryos. Monday's decision throws into question the future of the most-advanced study so far and puts a cloud over the commercial viability of stem cell treatments.

David Greenwood, Geron's president and chief financial officer, said halting the stem cell studies was not something the company took lightly.

"This is a decision made quite reluctantly by our board," he said. "We pioneered this field."

Although the company has sufficient finances to cover its cancer-drug costs over the next 20 months without having to raise more money, it noted in a news release, "this would not be possible if we continue to fund the stem cell programs at the current levels."

Although no problems have turned up so far in the stem cell study, Geron's cancer-drug studies are further along, making them a better bet for the company to pursue, Greenwood said. He added that it would have been difficult raising cash to continue studying both types of treatments, given Geron's stock price, which has fallen from $5.16 at the beginning of the year to $2.20 at the close of trading Monday. In after-hours trading following the stem cell announcement, Geron's shares sagged further to $1.82.


Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". HUNDREDS of columnists and cartoonists regularly appear. Sign up for the daily update. It's free. Just click here.

Incorporated in 1990, Geron has been among the world's most closely watched biotech companies because it was the first to receive U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval to test human embryonic stem cells on people. Many other companies are working with adult stem cells, which can be harvested from various parts of the body.

Geron spent more than 15 years and $150 million developing its treatment for spinal injuries, which the FDA approved for human testing in July 2010. The study is designed to determine if the cells can regrow a spinal insulating material, called myelin, which often gets stripped away in patients suffering severe spinal injuries. The first phase of the test, which so far has involved four patients, is designed to see if the treatment has any unanticipated side effects.

To finish the first phase, Geron had planned to test the treatment on about 30 patients, Greenwood said. Later stages of the study would examine whether the treatment is effective at regrowing myelin and helping paralyzed patients regain movement.

Last November, the FDA gave a second company — Advanced Cell Technology of Santa Monica, Calif. — approval to also test human embryonic stem cells on people. That test is being conducted on patients suffering from a rare disease that causes a serious loss of vision.

Officials with the state's $3 billion taxpayer-financed stem cell institute, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, issued a statement also expressing confidence that stem cell studies would continue to flourish, despite Geron's decision.

"We are optimistic about many exciting stem cell programs in California and internationally that have the potential to treat chronic diseases and conditions and that will benefit from the regulatory path first forged by Geron," according to the statement, which quoted Ellen Feigal, the agency's senior vice president for research and development.

Interested in a private Judaic studies instructor — for free? Let us know by clicking here.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes inspirational material. Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

We want your comments! Please let us know what you think by clicking here.

© 2011, San Jose Mercury News Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.