Stem cell research dates from the late 1990s, and induced pluripotent stem cell research has proliferated since its beginnings in 2006. Stem cell research is not only offering better understanding of how complex diseases work but also promising individualized medicine with autologous therapies—those using the patient’s own cells.

In the seven years prior to September 2008, stem cell registries and banks proliferated both nationally and internationally, raising concerns about inefficiency and duplication of efforts. Universities such as Massachusetts, Harvard, Rutgers, and others competed with commercial stem cell distributors and international registries such as the European Human Embryonic Stem Cell Registry and the International Stem Cell Bank; registries serving as catalogues, while banks actually store the stem cells. Banks can be public or private; for example, the ...

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