To concentrate on stem-cell research, the scientific team needs only one thing.
Space could well be the ideal laboratory to artificially grow healthy stem cells, those primitive units that can grow into any kind of cell and that could, one day, be used to replace injured tissue and alleviate conditions like spinal-cord damage. The weightlessness in space mimics - and amplifies - the floating conditions found in the womb. To find out if microgravity is the secret to healthy stem-cell development, Dr Danie Barry and his team from the University of Stellenbosch are training Mark Shuttleworth to conduct stem-cell experiments while on the International Space Station.
If successful, the investigation's results could carry tremendous scientific weight while, of course, carrying no weight at all. Cutting-edge biotechnology won't just save lives in Africa, it could put us ahead in the commercial race, too. Which is why HBD Venture Capital invests in the best South African biotech ideas. Nothing Ventured. Nothing Gained.