Stem Cell Eye Therapy Shows Promise: The study in The Lancet is the first published report on embryonic stem cell use in humans.
“…he’s the standard-bearer for stem cell research”
“Lanza published a paper in The Lancet earlier this year detailing the results of early clinical trials involving two women suffering from macular degeneration. A UCLA ophthalmologist injected each woman with 50,000 retinal cells derived from human embryonic stem cells, and according to the paper, both claim to have better vision as a result. They’re not 20/20. But after a single injection one now walks the mall alone, uses her computer, and can pour a cup of coffee. The other sees colors and can read five letters on the eye chart. If Lanza is remembered one day as the man who saved millions from blindness, his story will provide a ready-made biopic for Ben Affleck. Born in the hardscrabble town of Roxbury and raised by a professional gambler, he escaped the economic underclass through intelligence and imagination. At 13, he altered the DNA of a chicken to make it change color; the experiment was published in Nature. His sisters never graduated from high school. He received an MD from Penn and a Fulbright scholarship, and has collaborated with giants, including B.F. Skinner and Jonas Salk. He was the first ever to clone an endangered species, and now he’s the standard-bearer for stem cell research.”
Dr. Lanza selected as one of Prospect Magazine’s “World Thinkers 2015.” The thinkers were chosen for “engaging in original and profound ways with the central questions of the world today,” as well as for their continuing significance for “this year’s biggest questions” (in economics, science, philosophy, cultural and social criticism and in politics).
“Robert Lanza, one of the most prominent scientists in the field of stem cell biology, on Monday said he will lead global regenerative medicine research at Astellas Pharma Inc., the Japanese drug maker that acquired his Massachusetts company this month. Lanza will also remain in his current role of chief scientific officer at Astellas-owned Ocata Therapeutics Inc., which is developing stem cell therapies for a broad range of diseases.”
Lanza delivered the opening address to the judges and students at the Official Opening of 2015 MSSEF held at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. MSSEF was founded by the prestigious American Academy of Arts & Sciences and has advanced science literacy and inspired new generations of science and engineering leaders for over six decades. 400 distinguished scientists and engineers served as judges, providing the year-end competition with over $525,000 in scholarships and prizes.
Winner of Discover Magazine’s ‘People’s Choice’ Award
Stem cell breakthrough by Lanza and colleagues was voted the year\’s top story, beating the Ebola outbreak, climate change crisis, entangled photons, cosmic inflation, as well as the year’s other science stories ranging from topics in space exploration to mathematics, technology, paleontology, and the environment.
Dr. Robert Lanza featured in “CELLebrity” Doctors 2011 Calendar
Top U.S. scientists hang their lab coats for stem cell research fundraising efforts. The 2011 “CELLebrity” Doctors Calendar spotlights twelve highly renowned doctors in the U.S. and details the progress that has been made in their prospective medical fields. NOTE: All proceeds from calendar sales benefit SCF and will be earmarked towards funding stem cell research in the United States.
For the first time, an experimental treatment made from human embryonic stem cells has shown evidence of helping someone, partially restoring sight to two people suffering from slowly progressing forms of blindness
The first-ever report of the medical use of stem cells taken from human embryos
The first patients to receive human embryonic stem cell transplants say their lives have been transformed by the experimental procedure
Possible stem cell treatment for Macular Degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in older Americans
“This is the first time an embryonic stem cell therapy has been approved in Europe,” said Lanza.
“The initiation of these two clinical trials marks an important turning point for the field.” said Robert Lanza, the company’s chief scientific officer.
“Researchers see the start of a second set of tests, in blindness, as an important landmark for the stem-cell field.”
The great promise of stem cells is finally being put to the test. “We are finally ready to break ground on this field with the first trials,” says Dr. Robert Lanza, “It’s taken a decade of extensive research to get to this point.”
Lanza’s dream of turning human embryonic stem cells into therapies for the sick and the suffering is taking a huge step closer to reality.
Federal officials have approved the start of human embryonic stem cell treatment experiments on patients suffering a leading cause of vision loss.
For only the second time, the Food and Drug Administration approved a company’s request to test an embryonic stem cell-based therapy on human patients.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the second human trial of human embryonic stem cells — this one testing cells in people with a progressive form of blindness.
An American biotech company has just announced that it has been licensed to begin human trials of a stem cell treatment for blindness.
Government regulators have given the go-ahead to a second study that will for the first time carefully test a treatment created using human embryonic stem cells in people, according to the company sponsoring the experiment.
Federal officials have cleared a second clinical trial of a human embryonic stem-cell treatment, a company announced Monday, for a progressive blindness syndrome affecting young people.
NEW YORK (AP) – For only the second time, the U.S. government has approved a test in people of a treatment using embryonic stem cells – this time for a rare disease that causes serious vision loss.
Advanced Cell Technology, of Marlborough, Mass., said it would test its stem cell therapy on 12 adults with severe vision loss caused by Stargardt’s, an inherited disease. The company has turned human embryonic stem cells into retinal pigment epithelial cells, which will be surgically implanted into the eye. The hope is that the implanted cells […]
An interview with the author of Biocentrism, a book that Nyogen Roshi (the last authorized disciple of Taizan Maezumi Roshi, the foremost Zen master of the twentieth century) describes as mirroring his experiences in the practice of zazen as closely as anything he has encountered in a modern writer.
“My special guest is Dr. Robert Lanza and his extraordinary mind, I just finished reading his book Biocentrism and I said to myself, ‘Finally, aha, somebody that I can totally relate to.’”
“TIME Magazine: Top 100 Icons of the Century”
“To give us a glimpse about some of the big breakthroughs that were made in biotechnology, we have Dr. Robert Lanza of Advanced Cell Technology. He is one of the leading scientists making breakthroughs in this fast moving field.”
“Dr. Michio Kaku”
“Professor of Theoretical Physics and Co-Founder of String Theory”
“The Universe in Your Head”
“Stem cell pioneer Robert Lanza generates controversy on a whole different plane with ‘Biocentrism,’ a book that lays out his theory of everything.” Alan Boyle, MSNBC’s Science Editor
“Free Online Abridgment”
“Exclusive online abridgement ‘Biocentrism’: How life creates the universe. Authors say cosmology misses the big picture unless it includes biology.”
“First published in 1997, Principles of Tissue Engineering is the widely recognized definitive resource in the field. Co-edited with Robert Langer, Institute Professor at MIT, and Joseph Vacanti, The John Homans Professor at Harvard Medical School (Langer and Vacanti are considered the founders of tissue engineering)”
Robert Lanza and Kwang-Soo Kim of Harvard University have won a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s Opportunity Award for research in “Translating Basic Science Discoveries into New and Better Treatments” under the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act of 2009.
Dr. Lanza Recognized as a “Stem Cell Pioneer”
WORCESTER, MA – May 10, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE)—Advanced Cell Technology, Inc. (“ACT”; OTCBB: ACTC) announced today that the company’s Chief Scientific Officer, Robert Lanza, MD, has been recognized by BioWorld, a widely-read publication covering the biotechnology industry, as one of 28 leaders predicted to be the “movers and […]
by Sharon Begley
Embryonic” and “senescent” aren’t supposed to go together any more than “good” and “grief” or other oxymorons, which is why biologist Robert Lanza was “devastated” when he saw what was happening with the human stem cells he and colleagues were trying to grow. Like hundreds of other stem-cell scientists, they had been intrigued […]
By Alice Park
Stem-cell science is a fast-moving field. Just three years since a Japanese researcher first reprogrammed ordinary skin cells into stem cells without the use of embryos, scientists at a Massachusetts biotech company have repeated the feat, only this time with a new method that creates the first stem cells safe enough for […]
Evidence suggests death isn’t the end.
THE GRAND BIOCENTRIC DESIGN
How Life Creates Reality
The theory that blew your mind in Biocentrism and Beyond Biocentrism is back, with brand-new research revealing that its radical claims might not be so radical after all.
What is consciousness? Why are we here? Where did it all come from? All of it, the laws of nature, the stars, the universe. Humans have been asking these questions forever, but science hasn’t succeeded in providing many answers – until now. In The Grand Bicoentric Design, Robert Lanza, one of Time Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People,” is joined by theoretical physicist Matej Pavsic and astronomer Bob Berman to shed light on the big picture that has long eluded philosophers and scientists alike.
The Grand Biocentric Design is a one-of-a-kind, groundbreaking explanation of how the universe works, and an exploration of the science behind the astounding fact that time, space, and reality itself, all ultimately depend on us.
Rethinking Time, Space, Consciousness, and the Illusion of Death
Biocentrism shocked the world with a radical rethinking of the nature of reality … but that was just the beginning.
Robert Lanza, M.D. is considered one of the leading scientists in the world. His research spans the range of natural science, from biology to theoretical physics. TIME magazine recognized him as one of the “100 Most Influential People in the World,” and Prospect magazine named him one of the Top 50 “World Thinkers.” He was part of the team that cloned the world’s first human embryo, the first endangered species, and published the first-ever reports of pluripotent stem cell use in humans. [rl_read-more]
Lanza Named One of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World
Picture of Robert Lanza
Picture of Robert Lanza
Picture of Robert Lanza
Picture of Robert Lanza
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Next year will see the first person receive induced pluripotent stem cells – “rewound” adult cells that can grow into any tissue in the body Read more 2013 Smart Guide: Revolutionary human stem cell trial If all goes to plan, 2013 should see the first human trial of “rewound” cells. These are produced by turning adult …
By JONATHAN D. ROCKOFF Wall Street Journal A Massachusetts biotechnology company said it expects as early as Friday to start the process for regulatory approval of what would be the first human trial involving stem cells created by reprogramming adult cells back to an embryonic-like state. Researchers have been experimenting with treatments derived from stem …
Many of us fear death. We believe in death because we’ve been told we’ll die. We associate ourselves with the body, and we know that bodies die. But a new scientific theory suggests death isn’t the end.
One well-known aspect of quantum physics is that certain observations can’t be predicted absolutely. Instead, there’s a range of possible observations each with a different probability. One mainstream explanation, the “many-worlds” interpretation, states that each of these possible observations corresponds to a different universe (the ‘multiverse’). A new scientific theory – called biocentrism – refines these ideas. There are an infinite number of universes, and everything that could possibly happen occurs in some universe. Death doesn’t exist in any real sense in these scenarios. All possible universes exist simultaneously, regardless of what happens in any of them.
Although individual bodies are destined to self-destruct, the alive feeling – the ‘Who am I?’- is just a 20-watt fountain of energy operating in the brain. But this energy doesn’t go away at death. One of the surest axioms of science is that energy never dies; it can neither be created nor destroyed. But does this energy transcend from one world to the other?
Consider an experiment recently published in the journal Science showing that scientists could retroactively change something that happened in the past. Particles had to decide how to behave when they hit a beam splitter. Later on, the experimenter could turn a second switch on or off. It turns out that what the observer decided at that point, determined what the particle did in the past. Regardless of the choice you, the observer, make, it’s you who will experience the outcomes that will result. The linkages between these various histories and universes transcend our ordinary classical ideas of space and time. Think of the 20-watts of energy as simply holo-projecting either this or that result onto a screen. Whether you turn the second beam splitter on or off, it’s still the same battery or agent responsible for the projection.
According to Biocentrism, space and time aren’t the hard objects we think. Wave your hand through the air – if you take everything away, what’s left? Nothing. The same thing applies for time. You can’t see anything through the bone that surrounds your brain. Everything you see and experience right now is a whirl of information occurring in your mind. Space and time are simply the tools for putting everything together.
Death doesn’t exist in a timeless, spaceless world. In the end, even Einstein admitted, “Now Besso” (an old friend) “has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me. That means nothing. People like us…know that the distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.” Immortality doesn’t mean a perpetual existence in time without end, but rather resides outside of time altogether.
Life is a journey that transcends our classical, linear way of thinking. Experiment after experiment continues to suggest that we create time, not the other way around. This life is just one fragment of time, one brushstroke in a picture larger than ourselves, eternal even when we die.
After the death of his son, Emerson wrote “Our life is not so much threatened as our perception. I grieve that grief can teach me nothing, nor carry me one step into real nature.”
“Robert Lanza is widely acknowledged as one of the fathers of the field of applied stem cell biology.”
– Mark S Blumenkranz, MD, MMS
HJ Smead Professor, Stanford University, and Trustee, Brown University
From Wikipedia: The h-index measures both the productivity and impact of a scientist or scholar. A value for h of about 12 might be typical for advancement to tenure (associate professor) at major [US] research universities. A value of about 18 could mean a full professorship, 15–20 could mean a fellowship in the American Physical Society, and 45 or higher could mean membership in the United States National Academy of Sciences. According to Hirsch (who put forward the h-index), an h index of 20 is good, 40 is outstanding, and 60 is truly exceptional.
Here is a sampling of his papers:
Science (207: 543, 1980)
Science (212: 695, 1981)
Science (283: 1849, 1999)
Science (288: 665, 2000)
Science (294: 1893, 2001)
Science (295: 819, 2002)
Nature (252: 597, 1974)
Nature (308: 61, 1984)
Nature (439: 216, 2006)
Nature (444: 481, 2006)
Cell (11: 115, 1977)
Cell (17: 491, 1979)
Lancet (365: 1636, 2005)
Lancet (379: 713, 2012)
Lancet (385: 509, 2015)
Professionally, Lanza works at the cutting edge of human discovery, but the majority of his domestic space looks like a museum from a bygone era.
Lanza featured in the 2013 “TOP 50 Global Stem Cell Influencers.” It is the result of a global survey of the stem cell community, which yielded thousands of votes. The 50 personalities were picked based on their career achievements whether this was groundbreaking discovery and research, innovation, or lifetime dedication. Lanza was among the top four on the list, alongside James Thomson and Nobel laureate Shinya Yamanaka.
The Dawning of a New Era of Hope
Stem cell researcher Robert Lanza hopes to save thousands of lives — and for a long time this caused him to fear for his own… At the time, a doctor was threatened at a nearby fertility clinic, and a pipe bomb exploded at a bio lab in Boston. “Back then I thought that there was probably a 50-50 chance that I was going to get knocked off because I was so visible,” says the doctor. “I said, okay, try to kill me — I’m still going to do what I think is right.” In Lanza’s case, doing what is “right” involves working with therapies based on human stem cells. The blind shall see again; the paralyzed shall walk again; the hemophiliac shall not bleed anymore. That may sound like something out of the Bible, but Lanza is no faith healer. In fact, the US business magazine Fortune called him “the standard-bearer for stem cell research.” Lanza is often compared to the main character played by Matt Damon in the film “Good Will Hunting,” a highly talented outsider who, like Lanza, comes from a humble background.
Initial Success: “We have some surprisingly good visual outcome,” says Steven Schwartz, an eye surgeon at UCLA. He says that one of his patients can read a clock again and go shopping, while another can recognize colors again. Lanza is a “genius” and his work is “stellar,” Schwartz says.
The 21st century is predicted to be the Century of Biology, a shift from the previous century dominated by physics. It seems fitting, then, to begin the century by turning the universe outside-in and unifying the foundations of science, not with imaginary strings that occupy equally imaginary unseen dimensions, but with a much simpler idea that is rife with so many shocking new perspectives that we are unlikely ever to see reality the same way again.
Picture of Robert Lanza
Picture of Robert Lanza from Wired Magazine
“…Dr. Lanza’s writings provided me with the pieces of perspective that I had been desperately seeking.”
“I downloaded a digital copy of [Biocentrism] in the privacy of my home…Now, mind you, my motivation was not all that pure. It was my intention to read the book so I could more effectively refute it like a dedicated physicist was expected to. I consider myself to be firmly and exclusively entrenched in the cosmology camp embodied by the likes of Stephen Hawking, Lisa Randall, Brain Greene, and Edward Witten…The book had the completely opposite effect on me. The views that Dr. Lanza presented in this book changed my thinking in ways from which there could never be retreat. Before I had actually finished reading the book, it was abundantly obvious to me that Dr. Lanza’s writings provided me with the pieces of perspective that I had been desperately seeking. Everything I had learned and everything I thought I knew just exploded in my mind and, as possibilities first erupted and then settled down, a completely new understanding emerged. The information I had accumulated in my mind hadn’t changed, but the way I viewed it did – in a really big way.”
“There are More Books”. Click Here to See them All
Will kind people be rewarded for their good deeds? Will the wicked be punished? Yes, according to a new interpretation of recent experiments. Although our science is too primitive for us to fully comprehend, there is a direct and proportional price to pay for any act of cruelty or injustice.
Science suggests that there are consequences to our actions that transcend our ordinary, classical way of thinking. Emerson, it turns out, was right: “Every crime is punished, every virtue rewarded, every wrong redressed, in silence and certainty.”
I remember fishing on a warm summer night. Now and then I could feel the vibrations along the line linking me with the life prowling about the bottom. At length I pulled some bass, squeaking and gasping into the air. It was a puzzle to feel a tug, and to be conscious in that precise moment of a part of me, which, as it were, was not a part of me, but scale and fin, circling the hook, slow to strike.
Surely this is what Spinoza, the great philosopher, meant when he contended that consciousness cannot exist simply in space and time, and at the same time is aware of the interrelations of all parts of space and time. In order to have knowledge of a pout or a pickerel, I must have somehow been identical with them.
But how can this be? In experiments, it has been repeatedly shown that a single particle can be at two places at the same time. See the loon in the pond or the dandelion in the field. How deceptive is the space that separates them and makes them solitary. They are the subjects of the same reality that interested John Bell, who proposed the experiment that answered the question of whether what happens locally is affected by nonlocal events.
Experiments from 1997 to 2007 have shown that this is indeed the case. Physicist Nicolas Gisin sent entangled particles zooming along optical fibers until they were seven miles apart. But whatever action they took, the communication between them happened instantaneously. Today no one doubts the connectedness between bits of light or matter, or even entire clusters of atoms. They’re intimately linked in a manner suggesting there’s no space between them, and no time influencing their behavior. In fact, just last year, Gisin announced a new twist on his experiment; in this case, he thinks the results will be visible to the naked eye.
In the same way, there is a part of us that is connected to the fish in the pond. It is the part that experiences consciousness, not in our external embodiments but in our inner being. And although we identify ourselves with our thoughts and affections, it is an essential feature of reality that we experience the world piece by piece.
Everything you experience is a whirl of information occurring in your head; according to Biocentrism, space and time are simply the mind’s tools for putting it all together. However solid and real the walls of space and time have come to look, there is a part of us that is no more human than it is animal – even the fish, sporting there in the pond, a part of us unwittingly tempted by a bunch of worms strung on a thread.
As parts of such a whole there is justice. The bird and the prey are one. This was the world that confronted me that warm summer night. From the shore I could see the shiners dimpling the water with their tails in the moonlight. A bug furrowed the water, making a conspicuous ripple, which the fishes darted at. Only two diverging lines stood between them and natural justice.
“Non-separability,” said physicist Bernard d’Espagnat, “is now one of the most certain general concepts in physics.”
We suppose ourselves to be a pond; and if there is any consequence to our actions, if there is any justice, it must approach upon these shores. Yet that night, I sensed the union that the one man and creature has with the other. The fish and I, the criminal and the victim, are one and the same.
Justice is built into the fabric of nature. Make no mistake about it: it will be you who looks out the eyes of the victim. Or you can be the recipient of kindness — whichever you choose.
The problem is that even scientists are just earthworms beginning to grasp the non-linear dimensionality of nature. Heinz Pagels, the esteemed theoretical physicist, once stated: “If you deny the objectivity of the world, unless you observe it and are conscious of it (as most physicists have), then you end up with solipsism – the belief that your consciousness is the only one.”
This may not unsettle you, except perhaps on a warm moonlit night with a fish gasping for life at the end of your rod. I knew then, at that moment, that Pagel’s conclusion was right. Only it wasn’t my consciousness that was the only one, it was ours. According to biocentrism, our individual separateness is an illusion. Remember the words of Omar, who “never called the One two,” and of the old Hindu poem: “Know in thyself and All one self-same soul; banish the dream that sunders part from whole.”
There was no doubt; that consciousness which was behind the youth I once was, was also behind the mind of every animal and person existing in space and time. “There are,” wrote Loren Eiseley, noted anthropologist, “very few youths today who will pause, coming from a biology class, to finger a yellow flower or poke in friendly fashion at a sunning turtle on the edge of the campus pond, and who are capable of saying to themselves, ‘We are all one – all melted together.’”
Yes, I thought, we are all one. I let the fish go. With a thrash of the tail, I disappeared into the pond.
Robert Lanza, MD is author of over two dozen scientific books, including “Biocentrism,” a new book that lays out his theory of everything.
View article on Huffington Post (66 Comments)
Contemporary science asks us to believe that the entire universe – indeed the laws of Nature themselves – just popped into existence one day out of nothing. How can anyone in their right mind accept such a thing?
We take physics as a kind of magic and don’t question that 14 billion years ago over a trillion quadrillion tons of matter suddenly appeared from – zilch? We’re told that space and time also magically appeared as well.
From the Big Bang to Sarah Palin is an enormous distance. It would be well to remember the experiments of Redi and Pasteur – experiments that put to rest the theory of spontaneous generation, the belief that life arose from dead matter (for instance, maggots from rotting meat, mice from bundles of old clothes) – and not make the same mistake for the origin of the Universe itself. We imagine time extending all the way backwards to the Big Bang, before life’s beginning in the seas. But experiments with real particles show that before matter can exist (or have properties) it has to be observed. Something must sustain it above the void of nonexistence and hold the world together in the midst of change. That something is the human (or animal) mind.
Past generations believed the world was a great ball resting on the back of a turtle; now science would have us believe it’s a fairy universe that appeared out of nowhere and that expands into nothing. Angels used to push and pummel the planets about; now everything is a meaningless accident. We’ve exchanged a world turtle for a Big Bang. By reminding us of its great successes at figuring out the mechanics of things, and fashioning marvelous new devices out of raw materials, science gets away with patently ridiculous ‘explanations’ for the nature of the universe as a whole. If only it hadn’t given us HDTV and the George Foreman grill, it wouldn’t have held our respect long enough to pull the old three-card-monte when it comes to these largest issues.
“One does occasionally observe,” Loren Eiseley wrote, “a tendency for the beginning zoological textbooks to take the unwary reader by a hop, skip, and jump from the little steaming pond…into the lower world of life with such sureness and rapidity that it is easy to assume that there is no mystery about this matter at all, or, if there is, that it is a very little one.”
Science has sought to extend space and time beyond our own emergence. It followed our footsteps backwards until they disappeared into the sea. The cosmologists picked up the story of the molten Earth and carried it backwards in time through the lower forms of matter to the Big Bang.
But physics has learned that the world doesn’t exist in a definite state independent of the observer. Tracing life down through simpler stages is one thing, but assuming it arose spontaneously from nonliving matter wants for the rigor of the quantum theorist. I have seen the test-tube-like contraption that’s said to mimic the geophysical environment of the primitive earth, and that attempts to explain the origin of life in mechanistic terms without reference to any observer. While a variety of organic molecules can be synthesized in many ways – and it can even be done in your bathtub – the experiments do not fail to have an animal subject. Our intercourse with the molecules is necessary for them to exist as real objects. Half of the experiment is the scientist, who doesn’t recognize that their consciousness renders possible the space, indeed, the very reality of the vessel itself.
There is no invisible matrix out there that explains our origin. Rather, for each life there is a universe, its own universe. According to biocentrism, each of us generates our own sphere of reality. We carry space and time around us like turtles with shells. The Universe is comprised of billions of spheres of reality, a mélange whose scope is breathtaking. Strikingly, anything you don’t observe directly exists only as potential – or more mathematically speaking – as a haze of probability. “Nothing,” said John Wheeler, the great physicist “exists until it is observed.”
Since time doesn’t exist on any level before observers, traditional pre-Earth explanations of the universe can’t explain our origin. Think of the universe like one of those globes you see in the classroom – it’s merely a tool that represents everything that’s theoretically possible to experience. But like a CD, the music only leaps into reality when you play one of the songs. Instead of the Universe having an absolute beginning, imagine, instead, that existence is like a recording. Depending on where the needle is placed you hear a certain song. This is the present; the music, before and after is the past and future. All songs exist simultaneously, although we only experience them piece by piece.
“Let man,” declared Emerson, “then learn the revelation of all nature and all thought to his heart; this, namely; that the Highest dwells with him; that the sources of nature are in his own mind.”
Scientists have failed to see beyond their equations, to see the birds and butterflies husbanding their colors above the grass and trees against the sky. If only, coming home from the laboratory, they would look out upon the pond, and through the bulrushes, watch the schools of minnows rise to the surface to behold that vaster universe of which they are an intricate part.
We’re living through a profound shift in worldview, from the belief that life is an insignificant part of the physical universe (and sprung into existence from the Big Bang or bundles of old clothes), to one in which we – not the Big Bang – are the origin. Only for a moment, while we sort out the reality that time and space don’t exist without us, will it feel like madness.
View article on Huffington Post (535 Comments)
Why Do We Exist? Experiments Hold the Answer
by Andrew Moseman When scientists first created induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS cells) three years ago, they were hailed as a game-changing advance for medicine: Scientists hoped the engineered cells could duplicate the talents of embryonic stem cells, which can develop into any kind of cell in the body, while avoiding the destruction of embryos. …
Does Death Exist? New Theory Says 'No'
This article was published December 8, 2009 in: The Hufffington Post
Many of us fear death. We believe in death because we have been told we will die. We associate ourselves with the body, and we know that bodies die. But a new scientific theory suggests that death is not the terminal event we think.
One well-known aspect of quantum physics is that certain observations cannot be predicted absolutely. Instead, there is a range of possible observations each with a different probability. One mainstream explanation, the "many-worlds" interpretation, states that each of these possible observations corresponds to a different universe (the 'multiverse'). A new scientific theory - called biocentrism - refines these ideas. There are an infinite number of universes, and everything that could possibly happen occurs in some universe. Death does not exist in any real sense in these scenarios. All possible universes exist simultaneously, regardless of what happens in any of them. Although individual bodies are destined to self-destruct, the alive feeling - the 'Who am I?'- is just a 20-watt fountain of energy operating in the brain. But this energy doesn't go away at death. One of the surest axioms of science is that energy never dies; it can neither be created nor destroyed. But does this energy transcend from one world to the other?
Consider an experiment that was recently published in the journal Science showing that scientists could retroactively change something that had happened in the past. Particles had to decide how to behave when they hit a beam splitter. Later on, the experimenter could turn a second switch on or off. It turns out that what the observer decided at that point, determined what the particle did in the past. Regardless of the choice you, the observer, make, it is you who will experience the outcomes that will result. The linkages between these various histories and universes transcend our ordinary classical ideas of space and time. Think of the 20-watts of energy as simply holo-projecting either this or that result onto a screen. Whether you turn the second beam splitter on or off, it's still the same battery or agent responsible for the projection.
According to Biocentrism, space and time are not the hard objects we think. Wave your hand through the air - if you take everything away, what's left? Nothing. The same thing applies for time. You can't see anything through the bone that surrounds your brain. Everything you see and experience right now is a whirl of information occurring in your mind. Space and time are simply the tools for putting everything together.
Death does not exist in a timeless, spaceless world. In the end, even Einstein admitted, "Now Besso" (an old friend) "has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me. That means nothing. People like us...know that the distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion." Immortality doesn't mean a perpetual existence in time without end, but rather resides outside of time altogether.
This was clear with the death of my sister Christine. After viewing her body at the hospital, I went out to speak with family members. Christine's husband - Ed - started to sob uncontrollably. For a few moments I felt like I was transcending the provincialism of time. I thought about the 20-watts of energy, and about experiments that show a single particle can pass through two holes at the same time. I could not dismiss the conclusion: Christine was both alive and dead, outside of time.
Christine had had a hard life. She had finally found a man that she loved very much. My younger sister couldn't make it to her wedding because she had a card game that had been scheduled for several weeks. My mother also couldn't make the wedding due to an important engagement she had at the Elks Club. The wedding was one of the most important days in Christine's life. Since no one else from our side of the family showed, Christine asked me to walk her down the aisle to give her away.
Soon after the wedding, Christine and Ed were driving to the dream house they had just bought when their car hit a patch of black ice. She was thrown from the car and landed in a banking of snow.
"Ed," she said "I can't feel my leg."
She never knew that her liver had been ripped in half and blood was rushing into her peritoneum.
After the death of his son, Emerson wrote "Our life is not so much threatened as our perception. I grieve that grief can teach me nothing, nor carry me one step into real nature."
Whether it's flipping the switch for the Science experiment, or turning the driving wheel ever so slightly this way or that way on black-ice, it's the 20-watts of energy that will experience the result. In some cases the car will swerve off the road, but in other cases the car will continue on its way to my sister's dream house.
Christine had recently lost 100 pounds, and Ed had bought her a surprise pair of diamond earrings. It's going to be hard to wait, but I know Christine is going to look fabulous in them the next time I see her.
Robert Lanza, MD is considered one of the leading scientists in the world. He is the author of “Biocentrism,” a book that lays out his theory of everything.
"Evolution Reigns But Darwin Outmoded"
Robert Lanza and Deepak Chopra
This article was published October 5, 2009 in: The San Francisco Chronicle The Hufffington Post Beliefnet
Monday, October 5, 2009
This year, the world celebrated Charles Darwin's 200th birthday. But now that all the backslapping is nearing an end, it may be time to reflect on where things really stand. When Darwin finished writing "Origin of Species" in the fall of 1859 â€” exactly 150 years ago â€” the theory of evolution became part of the Newtonian world picture. However, since that time, major puzzles of mainstream science have forced a re-evaluation of the nature of the universe that goes far beyond anything Darwin could have imagined.
One new theory â€” called biocentrism â€” proposes that an accurate understanding of the world requires putting observers firmly into the equation, and that life may not be the accident of physics and chemistry that evolution suggests (Lanza and Berman, Biocentrism, BenBella, 2009). In short, the attempt to explain the nature of the universe, its origins, and what is really going on, including evolution, requires an understanding of how the observer â€” consciousness â€” plays a role.
The current model proposes that the universe was until rather recently a lifeless collection of particles bouncing against each other, and obeying predetermined rules that were mysterious in their origin. The universe is presented as a watch that somehow wound itself and that, allowing for a degree of quantum randomness, will unwind in a semi-predictable way. But there are many problems with this paradigm â€” some obvious, others rarely mentioned but just as fundamental. But the overarching problem involves life, even if the way it changes forms can be apprehended using Darwinian mechanisms.
Why, for instance, are the laws of nature exactly balanced for life to exist? There are over 200 physical parameters within the solar system and universe so exact that it strains credulity to propose that they are random â€” even if that is exactly what contemporary physics baldly suggests. These fundamental constants (like the strength of gravity) are not predicted by any theory â€” all seem to be carefully chosen, often with great precision, to allow for existence of life. Tweak any of them and you never existed.
Beyond these laws and constants, consider everything that had to happen to bring about humans. There are literally trillions of events that had to be just right â€” 'this way' and not 'that way' â€” for us to be here. Consider the meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs â€” if its trajectory had been slightly different, or the asteroid had been slightly larger, we might not be here. The odds are astronomically against everything happening exactly right. So the question is, is it dumb luck? But if you say something is an accident, it usually means you don't understand the reason for it.
Being here may be no more an accident than the sun rising in the morning. Perhaps biocentrism is right â€” perhaps the past is simply the spatio-temporal logic of the observer. No physicist challenges the fact that particles do not exist with definite physical properties until they are observed. If the present determines the past as Stephen Hawking, John Wheeler (who coined the word 'black hole'), and others have suggested, then it couldn't be any other way.
Darwin's theory of evolution is an enormous over-simplification. It's helpful if you want to connect the dots and understand the interrelatedness of life on the planet â€” and it's simple enough to teach to children between recess and lunch. But it fails to capture the driving force and what's really going on.
It is time to step back and take a look at the big picture. Evolution reminds us that we evolved in the forest roof to collect fruit and berries, not to ponder the nature of life itself. The challenge, alas, is to peer not just behind our ancestral way of thinking, but to grasp the world in a way that is at the same time simpler and more demanding than what we are accustomed to.
Robert Lanza, MD is considered one of the leading scientists in the world. He is the author of “Biocentrism,” a book that lays out his theory of everything. Deepak Chopra is the author of over 50 books on health, success, relationships and spirituality, including his most recent novel, "Jesus: A Story of Enlightenment," available now at www.deepakchopra.com.
Stem-cell science is a fast-moving field. Just three years since a Japanese researcher first reprogrammed ordinary skin cells into stem cells without the use of embryos, scientists at a Massachusetts biotech company have repeated the feat, only this time with a new method that creates the first stem cells safe enough for human use. The …
by Robert Lanza (Editor), Irina Klimanskaya (Editor)
This is a fast moving field and these detailed methods will help drive advances in stem cell research. The editors have hand-selected step-by-step methods from researchers with extensive reputations and expertise. This volume, as part of the Reliable Lab Solutions series, delivers busy researchers a handy, time-saving source for the […]
By Shi-Jiang Lu, Qiang Feng, Jennifer Park, Loyda Vida, Bao-Shiang Lee, Michael Strausbauch, Peter Wettstein, George Honig, Robert Lanza
Human erythropoiesis is a complex multistep process that involves the differentiation of early erythroid progenitors to mature erythrocytes. Here we show that it is feasible to differentiate and mature human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) into functional […]
Growing new body parts, reversing paralysis, stretching the limits of the human life span: This trailblazing stem cell researcher believes it is all within our reach.
How Life and Consciousness are the Keys to Understanding the True Nature of the Universe
“Like “A Brief History of Time” it is indeed stimulating and brings biology into the whole. Any short statement does not do justice to such a scholarly work. Almost every society of mankind has explained the mystery of our surroundings and being by invoking a god or group of gods. Scientists work to acquire objective answers from the infinity of space or the inner machinery of the atom. Lanza proposes a biocentrist theory which ascribes the answer to the observer rather than the observed. The work is a scholarly consideration of science and philosophy that brings biology into the central role in unifying the whole. The book will appeal to an audience of many different disciplines because it is a new way of looking at the old problem of our existence. Most importantly, it makes you think.”
– Nobel Prize Winner E. Donnall Thomas
By: Sadhana Agarwal, Katherine L. Holton, Robert Lanza
Differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) to specific functional cell types can be achieved using methods that mimic in vivo embryonic developmental programs. Current protocols for generating hepatocytes from hESCs are hampered by inefficient differentiation procedures that lead to low yields and large cellular heterogeneity. We […]
The Biocentric Universe Theory: Stem-cell guru Robert Lanza presents a radical new view of the universe and everything in it.
By Young Chung, Irina Klimanskaya, Sandy Becker, Tong Li, Marc Maserati, Shi-Jiang Lu, Tamara Zdravkovic, Dusko Ilic, Olga Genbacev, Susan Fisher, Ana Krtolica, and Robert Lanza
To date, the derivation of all human embryonic stem cell (hESC) lines has involved destruction of embryos. We previously demonstrated that hESCs can be generated from single blastomeres (Klimanskaya […]
Advanced Cell Makes Stem Cells Without Harming Embryo By Rob Waters Jan. 10 (Bloomberg) — Advanced Cell Technology Inc. scientists say they perfected a method to create new lines of stem cells from a human embryo that doesn't harm the embryo and may help overcome ethical concerns about the research. The method involves extracting one …
Embryonic Stem Cells Created Without Harming Embryo, for Real This Time By Brandon Keim Email 01.10.08 | 12:00 PM Scientists hope a new method for producing embryonic stem cells without damaging embryos will finally place the cells in the labs of scientists searching for cures to now-untreatable diseases. In a study published Thursday in Cell …
Stem cells created without destroying embryos By Karen Kaplan, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer January 11, 2008 Scientists reported Thursday that for the first time they have made human embryonic stem cells without destroying embryos, a development that the government’s top stem cell official said would make the controversial research eligible for federal funding. Story …
Embryonic Stem Cells Without the Guilt? Posted Thursday, January 10, 2008 11:00 AM Sharon Begley When two groups of scientists independently reported that they had caused adult human cells to regress to a state that seemed indistinguishable from embryonic stem cells, it seemed the long and bitter battle over stem cells might be history. Rather …
Robert Lanza’s co-authored “Principles of Tissue Engineering” is now available for purchase at Amazon.com. To get more information on this work, please read the description or follow the link below.
Description: First published in 1997, Principles of Tissue Engineering is the widely recognized definitive resource in the field. The third edition provides a much needed update […]
“Principles of Regenerative Medicine”, which Robert Lanza provided assistance in editing, is now available on the book purchasing website Elsevier.com. Below is a description and link to the work:
Description: Virtually any disease that results from malfunctioning, damaged, or failing tissues may be potentially cured through regenerative medicine therapies, by either regenerating the damaged tissues in […]
Scientists: Stem Cells Colonies Created Without Harming Embryos By Rick Weiss, Washington Post Thursday, January 10, 2008; 12:16 PM Scientists in Massachusetts said today they had created several colonies of human embryonic stem cells without harming the embryos from which they were derived, the latest in a series of recent advances that could speed development …
Embryo-Friendly Technique Produces Stem Cells By Maggie Fox WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A company that devised a way to make embryonic stem cells using a technique it said does not harm human embryos reported on Thursday it has grown five batches of cells using this method and urged President George W. Bush to endorse it. Massachusetts-based …
Scientists Create Stem-Cell Line January 11, 2008, Wall Street Journal By Gautam Naik Scientists have created fresh human stem-cell lines without destroying the embryos from which they were derived, the latest in a series of experiments aimed at overcoming ethical concerns that have long hobbled such research. Using the new technique, scientists extracted a single …
Lanza’s team cloned the first human embryo. How American scientists made history by creating lifesaving embryos cells.
U.S. News & World Report
Endangered species cloned. This is the first time one species has been cloned using the eggs and surrogate mother of an entirely different species. Scientists think they can use the same technique to resurrect the woolly mammoth and other extinct species.
Robert Lanza, MD, and several other scientists recently participated in a discussion on “How can journals improve peer review of cloning papers?” Read the whole post, as well as Robert Lanza’s opinion at Nature.com.
Robert Lanza Receives Award for Eye-Opening Work on Embryonic Stem Cells
Recent evidence suggests the existence of progenitor cells in adult tissues that are capable of differentiating into vascular structures as well as into all hematopoietic cell lineages. Here we describe an efficient and reproducible method for generating large numbers of these bipotential progenitors—known as hemangioblasts—from human embryonic stem (hES) cells using an in vitro differentiation system.
“The answer to the universe is biology — it’s as simple as that,” says Dr. Robert Lanza, vice president of research and scientific development at Advanced Cell Technology.
Vice-President of Research & Scientific Development, Robert Lanza, M.D.’s, provocative new theory that time and space do not exist as physical realities independent of humans (and animals) has been published in a feature article “A New Theory of the Universe” in the Spring issue of “The American Scholar”, one of the nation’s leading literary and intellectual publications.
Send in the Clones. Biologist Robert Lanza has a plan to help endangered species fight extinction.
by Robert Lanza, Robert Lanza (Editor)
This is the third of three planned volumes in the Methods in Enzymology series on the topic of stem cells. This volume is a unique anthology of stem cell techniques written by experts from the top laboratories in the world.
by Irina Klimanskaya, Robert Lanza (Editor)
This is the second of three planned volumes in the Methods in Enzymology series on the topic of stem cells. This volume is a unique anthology of stem cell techniques focusing on adult stem cells, and written by experts from the top laboratories in the world.
by Irina Klimanskaya, Robert Lanza (Editor)
This is the first of three planned volumes in the Methods in Enzymology series on the topic of stem cells. This volume is a unique anthology of stem cell techniques written by experts from the top laboratories in the world. The contributors not only have hands-on experience in the field but often have developed the original approaches that they share with great attention to detail.
Biologists have developed a technique for establishing colonies of human embryonic stem cells from an early human embryo without destroying it. This method, if confirmed in other laboratories, would seem to remove the principal objection to the research.
Biologists have developed a technique for establishing colonies of human embryonic stem cells from an early human embryo without destroying it.
New York Times
Bruce A Fenderson, Ph.D. (Thomas Jefferson University)
This beautiful hardcover book provides a concise and complete introduction to the theory and practice of stem cell research. It includes 69 definitive chapters on topics ranging from “molecular bases of pluripotency” and “nuclear cloning and epigenetic reprogramming” to “ethics of human stem cell research.” The primary focus is on cellular and developmental biology.
By: Gosta Gahrton, The New England Journal of Medicine, June 29, 2006
After Ernest A. MCCulloch and James E. Till received the Albert Lasker Medical Research Award in Basic Research in 2005, they wrote a commentary in Nature Medicine. In it, they asked themselves, “Why now?” After all, their papers on the colony-assay model of cells from the mouse spleen—which described for the first time the hematopoietic stem cell of the bone marrow as a cell that is capable of both self-renewal and differentiation—are more than 40 years old. This book seems to have the answers.
by Robert Lanza (Editor), E. Donnall Thomas (Editor), James Thomson (Editor), Roger Pedersen (Editor), John Gearhart (Editor), Brigid Hogan (Editor), Douglas Melton (Editor), Michael West (Editor)
This abridged version of the bestselling reference Handbook of Stem Cells, Two-Volume Set attempts to incorporate all the essential subject matter of the original two-volume edition in a single volume.
Scientists have devised two new techniques to derive embryonic stem cells in mice, one of which avoids the destruction of the embryo, a development that could have the potential to shift the grounds of the longstanding political debate about human stem cell research.
Stem Cell Test Tried on Mice Saves Embryo. Technique Could Shift Debate on Humans.
New York Times
A New Theory of the Universe: Biocentrism builds on quantum physics by adding life to the equation.
The American Scholar
Steve Goldman (University of Rochester Medical Center)
The definition of a stem cell—like that of beauty—lies in the eyes of the beholder. Do stem cells strictly refer to embryonic stem cells and primordial germ cells—the pluripotent and self-renewing derivatives of blastocysts and embryonic gonads? Or should we include the multipotent but tissue-specified precursors of fetal organogenesis?
Seven Days of Creation. The inside story of a human cloning experiment.
“…his mentors described him [Lanza] as a “genius,” a “renegade” thinker, even likening him to Einstein.”
“Robert Lanza is the living embodiment of the character played by Matt Damon in the movie Good Will Hunting. Growing up underprivileged in Stoughton, Mass., south of Boston, the young preteen caught the attention of Harvard Medical School researchers when he showed up on the university steps having successfully altered the genetics of chickens in his basement. Over the next decade, he was to be “discovered” and taken under the wing of scientific giants such as psychologist B. F. Skinner, immunologist Jonas Salk, and heart transplant pioneer Christiaan Barnard. His mentors described him as a “genius,” a “renegade” thinker, even likening him to Einstein.”
“Greatest Psychologist of All Time”
Most Influential Psychologists
(American Psychological Association)
1. B. F. Skinner
2. Jean Piaget
3. Sigmund Freud
SCIENCE 207; 543 (1980)
Lanza (with Skinner & Epstein)
SCIENCE 212; 695 (1981)
Lanza (with Skinner & Epstein)
Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior 38; 201 (1982)
Lanza (with Skinner & Starr)
Pigeon Talk − A triumph for bird brains
Pigeons’ ‘Conversation’ Triggers a Debate About Language
New York Times
Science Watch: ‘Self-Awareness’ in Animals
New York Times
Pigeons Punch Buttons. Talking or Training?
My Weekly Reader
Work with Jonas Salk
Developed Polio Vaccine
J. Supramol. Struct 182;33 (1979)
Lanza (with Salk)
Work with Christiaan Barnard
Performed the World’s First Heart Transplant
New England Journal of Medicine 307; 1275 (1982)
Lanza (with Barnard & Cooper)
JAMA 249; 1746 (1983)
Lanza (with Barnard, Cooper & Cassidy)
American Heart Journal 107; 8 (1984)
Lanza (with Barnard, Cooper & Boyd)
Work with Professor Rodney Porter
Recipient of the 1972 Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology
Lanza worked with Porter at Oxford University in 1977
Work with Dr. Gerald Edelman
Nobel-winner was “The Father of Modern Immunology”
Lanza worked with Edelman at Rockefeller University in 1976
by Robert Lanza (Editor), Irving Weissman (Editor), James Thomson (Editor), Roger Pedersen (Editor), Brigid Hogan (Editor), John Gearhart (Editor), Helen Blau (Editor), Douglas Melton (Editor), Malcolm Moore (Editor), Catherine Verfaillie (Editor), E. Donnall Thomas (Editor), Michael West (Editor)
New discoveries in the field of stem cell research have frequently appeared in the news and in scientific literature. Research in this area promises to lead to new therapies for cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and a wide variety of other diseases.
Source: Scientific American June 2004 issue
Stem cells raise the prospect of regenerating failing body parts and curing diseases that have so far defied drug-based treatment. Patients are buoyed by reports of the cells’ near-miraculous properties, but many of the most publicized scientific studies have subsequently been refuted, and other data have been distorted in debates over the propriety of deriving some of these cells from human embryos.
It’s late on a Sunday afternoon and nearly dark inside the tiny, windowless lab; fluorescent light is said to be bad for human embryos. I’m sitting beside Robert Lanza, medical director at Advanced Cell Technology.
by Jose Cibelli (Editor), Robert Lanza (Editor), Keith Campbell (Editor), Michael D. West (Editor)
Principles of Cloning is the first comprehensive book on cloning since Dolly the sheep was cloned. The contributing authors are the principal investigators on each of the animal species cloned to date and are expertly qualified to present the state-of-the-art information in their respective areas.
by Anthony Atala (Editor), Robert P. Lanza (Editor)
Tissue engineering is a dynamic and rapidly growing field emerging from the cross-disciplinary efforts of engineers, physical and life scientists, and physicians to create new tissues and organs from cells and synthetic molds. Recent developments have led to a great expansion of clinical applications using tissue engineering technologies.
by Robert Lanza (Editor), Robert Langer (Editor), Joseph P. Vacanti (Editor)
The first edition of the book, published in 1997, is the definite reference in the field. Since that time, however, the discipline has grown tremendously, and few experts would have been able to predict the explosion in our knowledge of gene expression, cell growth and differentiation, the variety of stem cells, new polymers and materials that are now available, or even the successful introduction of the first tissue-engineered products into the marketplace.
Stem cell advance by Lanza and colleagues was voted the year’s top story, beating the Ebola outbreak, climate change crisis, entangled photons, cosmic inflation, as well as the year’s other science stories ranging from topics in space exploration to mathematics, technology, paleontology, and the environment.