Medical leap

Angelina Jolie’s revelation that she had a preventative double mastectomy was a brave decision but it surely underlines the need for a quantum leap in medical procedures.

I suspect that long before this century is out, when cinema historians write about one of 
the new millennium’s better actresses, horrified readers will exclaim: “She did what?”

Of course medics trying to think out of the box are immediately accused of heterodoxy by the establishment and attacked by all sorts of health freaks and religious nutters.

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So the news of a breakthrough in the generation of embryonic stem cells from a patient’s skin cells in order to treat serious disorders will not be met with universal rejoicing.

However, it is clear the technique could accelerate progress towards the development of patient-specific embryonic stem cells to treat a vast range of ­degenerative diseases.

And that has got to be good news.

(Dr) John Cameron

St Andrews