Stem Cells May Help LaBelle Toddler Hear

For all Stephanie Conner knew, her daughter would be born deaf, blind
and with organ damage — the result of an often symptomless virus
Stephanie had passed to her unborn child. So when the girl, Madeline,
was finally delivered at a Miami hospital,
Stephanie and her husband considered it a major blessing that the
girl’s biggest problem was her inability to hear. Now, the LaBelle
family hopes medical science will deliver another round of news verging
on the miraculous: a stem cell cure or partial cure. Madeline, who is
nearly 2 years old, is the first person in the nation to take part in a
new FDA-approved study of stem cell treatment of sensorineural hearing