HDNet’s “World Report” To Feature a North Carolina Woman and Her Amazing Recovery From Blindness Through the Use of Stem Cells

Colette Carey
(303) 542-5576


What was once a controversial, scientific dream, using stem cells to cure disease, is now becoming a reality-Tuesday, June 14 at 9:00 p.m. ET

DALLAS (June 13, 2011) – HDNet “World Report,” the Emmy Award-winning national news program, takes an in-depth look at the revolutionary advances in stem cell research and tells the story of one woman whose life has been transformed by a stem cell transplant. It is the second in a three-part World Report series called “The Stem Cell Revolution.”

Tuesday’s program will feature Amanda Aswell a local Fayetteville woman whose experience with a stem cell transplant completely changed her life…after being blind for 20 years, she can now see.

Stricken with a rare, allergic reaction to the chicken pox as an eight year-old child, the result was almost twenty years of complete blindness. That is, until she received donated stem cells from her parents.

Aswell describes the extraordinary and emotional moments of discovery when her sight returned after being blind – seeing clouds, her husband, even herself in a mirror. “I won’t lie, I spent a lot time looking in the mirror,” she says with a smile.

By definition, stem cells are universal; they can morph into all kinds of specific cells and tissues throughout the body. Much controversy has surrounded the use embryonic stem cells, but the treatment Aswell received used adult stem cells, harvested from her parents.

Until recently, using adult stem cells to cure some of man’s worst diseases was only a dream … now for patients with maladies like heart disease, diabetes, skin disease, Parkinson’s, Lou Gehrig’s Disease, and some cancers, it’s a reality.

And that’s the big advance in just the last few years. Scientists have been learning to program adult stem cells, to become just as versatile, just as “universal,” as embryonic cells. Sometimes they’re taken from the very patient who is sick, which means almost no chance of rejection.

View a clip from the program:

To see how Amanda’s life has completely changed due to this miracle treatment, tune into “HDNet World Report,” Tuesday, June 14 at 9:00 p.m. ET with an encore at 12:00 a.m. ET.

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