Here we go again. In January, poor Jim Naughtie was beside himself that the use of embryonic stem cells had allegedly caused an improvement in two cases of macular degeneration. And poor Professor Daniel Brison of Manchester had to tell him to calm down and that - read this over until it sinks in - the improvements had been in the untreated eyes.
The term "stem cell research" is persistently used to mean scientifically worthless but morally abhorrent playing about with embryonic stem cells, together with the viciously cruel justification of this by reference to an ever-longer list of medical conditions. The real stem cell research involves adult and cord blood stem cells, is ethically unproblematic, and has already yielded real results.
But it struggles to secure funding, because it is of no interest to those who cannot forgive the Catholic Church either for having educated them or for having educated the wrong sort. In fact, this very University of Newcastle effectively drove back to his native France a hugely promising research scientist in the field of real stem cells, by failing to fund his adequately, or even at all. Yet somehow, it can find the money, your money and mine, for this.