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Banking stem cells could save Japan nuclear workers

CHICAGO - Health officials shouldcollect blood from workers at the crippled Fukushima Daiichinuclear power plant in case they are accidentally exposed tohigh levels of radiation and need a stem cell transplant,Japanese researchers said on Thursday.

They said gathering blood from the workers would give thema ready source of their own stem cells that could help rebuildtheir bone marrow should they become exposed to high levels ofradiation.

"The danger of a future accidental radiation exposure isnot passed, since there has been a series of seriousaftershocks even this April," Dr Shuichi Taniguchi of ToranomonHospital in Tokyo and Dr Tetsuya Tanimoto of the JapaneseFoundation for Cancer Research wrote in the Lancet medicaljournal.

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