Embryonic Stem Cells Essay

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Embryonic Stem Cells: The Cell of Many Potentials

According to renowned physicist Stephen Hawking, “Stem cell research is the key to developing cures for degenerative conditions like Parkinson 's and motor neuron disease from which I and many others suffer. The fact that the cells may come from embryos is not an objection, because the embryos are going to die anyway.” Stem cells are undifferentiated cells that have two important abilities. Firstly, they have the ability to renewed themselves through cell division for long periods of time, often months to years depending on the type of stem cell. Secondly, due to be undifferentiated, or unspecialized, cells, they have the ability to develop into specialized cells, such as those of tissue or
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In addition, groups, such as a religious groups, are against the research into a specific type of stem cell, embryonic stem cells due to how they’re derived. Embryonic stem cells are obtained from the destruction of an embryo that was grown from a fertilized egg that was originally created for in vitro fertilization and donated with consent from the mother if extra eggs remain following the procedure. Currently, the government used $180 million dollar on embryonic stem cell research. ("Estimates of Funding for Various Research, Condition, and Disease Categories (RCDC)") However, the government should increase the funding into the research of embryonic stem cells because of their potential to provide treatments to diseases and traumas such as diabetes, lung disease, …show more content…
Spinal cord injuries destroy numerous cell types, making treatment of it with embryonic stem cells more difficult. Myelin is a substance that surrounds the axons of neurons and allow for functional messaging to occur between the neuron cells in the spine to the brain. The cells that produce this substance, known as oligodendrocytes, are lost when injury occurs. Researchers have been making progress in using embryonic stem to replace these cells in hopes of allowing those with spinal cord injuries to regain movement of their limbs. In one study, scientists cultured embryonic stem cells with oligodendrocytes and then implanted them into rats which had been chemically-demyelinated and therefore were just like those with spinal cord injuries. The scientists found that the rats had regained limited hind leg function. (Pachision, David M.) This shows how useful embryonic stem cells can be to treat those with spinal cord injury and with more research, could become the standard for helping those with spinal cord injuries recover the ability to use their limbs. And not only in spinal cord injuries, since many other degenerative diseases revolve around the loss of myelin, research into this can prove to cure those diseases as well, as seen in another study where genetically mutated rat that couldn’t produce myelin

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