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Stem cell research gets the green light

It's official. UCSD, and the Scripps, Salk, and Burnham Institutes formally entered into an agreement Friday to collaborate on stem cell research. KPBS reporter Beth Ford Roth has more.

The new research collaboration will be called the San Diego Consortium for Regenerative Medicine. John Reed of the Burnham Institute for Medical Research says the underlying goal of the stem cell research will be a cure for diseases like Parkinson's, diabetes, and Alzheimer's.

Reed: "We do know with absolute certainty that the fastest way to get there is through collaboration, bringing talented biologists, chemists, engineers and physicians together in a veritable symphony of scientific synergy."

The four research institutions will now begin Phase II of the agreement. That's figuring out where the facility will be and how much it will cost.

Consortium leaders say the timeline will be determined in part by Proposition 71, which could deliver hundreds of millions of dollars in grants but is currently being held up in the courts.

Beth Ford Roth, KPBS news.

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