Stem Cells Revolutionize Medicine

Improved Essays
“Stem cell research can revolutionize medicine, more than anything since antibiotics.” This statement was said by former president of the United States of America, Ronald Reagan. Mr. Reagan in this statement was saying that stem cells are the future of medicine and can change how the medical field may approach a problem. Stem cells are cells that have the potential to develop into different kinds of cells. Stem cells have an internal repair system. They can also replenish other cells. There are generally two kinds of stem cells that scientists work with: embryonic stem cells and somatic or adult stem cells. Most of the research come from lab work, where scientists keep stem cells in cultures, where they can divide. Stem cells should be continued …show more content…
One of the many properties is that stem cells are able to divide and replicate. For this to happen, the cell has to be alive. After the process of division occurs, the stem cell can remain a stem cell or become a different cell. Cell division can also create an embryo, called a blastocyst. This can only occur after the cell is fertilized. The process of division and replication can continue for a long time. Another property of stem cells is that they can be unspecialized. Unspecialized cells are made through division. Unspecialized cells either become tissue or organs. These cells can also replace worn out or damaged tissues. The last unique property researched is that the stem cells can give rise to specialized cells. The process of differentiation can happen with these cells. Differentiation is where unspecialized embryonic cells receive features of specialized cells. Examples of this process is the heart, liver, or muscle cells. Differentiation is controlled by signaling pathways, inside and outside of the cell, involving proteins. These signals tell the cell which step to go …show more content…
One challenge involves the process of differentiation. Since differentiation is always changing, scientists have no idea how to control the changing of the stem cells. Scientists have tried a process called directed differentiation, which is the manipulation of the stem cells’ culture conditions to make the process into a certain cell type. However, this process is not reliable. Another challenge is the process of specialization. To make stem cells in the lab means that you can not make fully working specialized cells. Another set back of this research is that it is very hard to understand. Once a scientist finds new information, it is very difficult to use because there is so little knowledge. The next challenge is the availability of stem cells. Adult stem cells are very difficult to grow in a lab and embryonic stem cells are very difficult to transfer. The last of the challenges is rejection of the cells. Adult stem cells are less likely to be rejected, but embryonic stem cells are rejected very easily from the

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    Also, under physiologic or experimental conditions they can be induced to become tissue or organ specific cells with special functions. Stem cells are distinguished from other cells in the body. All stem cells have three general properties: they are capable of dividing and renewing themselves for long periods; they are unspecialized; and…

    • 1109 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    Over time, some plans for controlling the differentiation of embryonic stem cells have been defined. In the future, if researchers can reliably direct differentiation of embryonic stem cells into what they want, they might be able to treat different kinds of diseases (1). Adult stem cells are undifferentiated cells that exist with differentiated cells in organs or tissues. These stem cell’s roles are to repair and/or maintain the tissue in which they are found. They can regenerate and differentiate yielding either some or all of the major specialized cells of the organ or tissue that they are found in (1).…

    • 1504 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    There are multiple tactics of accessing stem cells; these cells can be collected through umbilical cord blood, bone marrow, many organs, the skin, blood vessels, etc. This eliminates the controversy and proves another reason that the research into stem cells and their uses is vital. These means can be more favorable than embryos to some people and their beliefs. Tissue stem cells are another derivation and way to obtain the cells. “Tissue stem cells allow us to develop, grow, heal, and replace worn out cells” (Lewis).…

    • 1044 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    They are put to use. There are many potential uses of stem cells in the biomedical and medicinal research fields. In the biomedical field, stem cells are used for a varriety of reasons.One reason is the ability to determine the human bodies complex function in development. It will give scientist a better look into discovering genetics and the molecular oversight in cell division. Also, with understanding differentiation, different procedures or discoveries can help aide in curing cancer and manage birth defects (“Stem Cell Basics”).…

    • 1160 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The third type of cloning is Therapeutic cloning in which one of the goals is to produce stem cells that can be used for replacing diseased tissue and other medical benefits. The process of cloning is also very important. There are a couple of ways that scientists can create a clone, one of which is artificial embryo twinning and the other is somatic cell nuclear transfer. The first process to be discovered was artificial embryo twinning; this…

    • 1595 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    These cells are grown in special laboratories with tests that are carried out to investigate the properties and purposes of the cells and how they can be used or if they are even useful. There is a lot of debate over stem cell research and if it is really necessary and ethical issues. In recent years, stem cell research and its methods have mainly focused on Embryonic Stem cells, this is because taking research and studying the embryos is easier and more reliable than studying adult stem cells. Pros of the use of stem cell research Potentially being able to help treat a wide range of medical issues, leading to better treatment and possibly cures to many diseases with some including, Parkinson 's disease, spinal cord injuries, replace or repair damaged organs and heart disease Better treatments of diseases could give significant social benefits for individual patients and economic gains for the society Embryonic stem cells offers numerous medical possibilities. The cells are undifferentiated which allows them be used and turned into any cell in the…

    • 2468 Words
    • 10 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    A stem cell is simply a cell capable of developing into any other type of cell. It is a biological foundation that hasn’t specialized itself for a specific purpose, however can easily do so for different functions within the body. The cell can be totipotent (able to develop into an organism), pluripotent (able to form tissues of an organism)or multipotent specialized for a certain tissues e.g. blood). Whilst stem cells are mainly known for coming from embryos, there are a wide variety of other sources from which they come, including the bone marrow, placenta, teeth, amniotic fluid and umbilical cord blood, arguably the largest and best source of these cells.…

    • 1431 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    The two types of gene therapy are somatic gene therapy and germ line gene therapy. Gene therapy using germ line cells results in permanent changes that are passed down to subsequent generations. (GeneTherapy) This means potentially, organisms engineered by germ line therapy could pass down their changes to subsequent generations if they inherit the target gene. Somatic therapy isn’t reproductive meaning they are confined to the recipient unlike germ line therapy; the genes are introduced into a sematic cell. (MajorDifferences) 
Somatic gene therapy however can be split into two different categories known as; ex vivo and in vivo.…

    • 1046 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    One way is for a couple to go through the process of in vitro fertilization, which means that the egg and sperm are fertilized in a culture dish. More embryos that are required are created in this process, so any left over eggs are frozen. Many couples choose to donate any unused fertilized eggs to scientific research. The benefits of embryonic stem cells are the versatility of them. Since embryonic cells are younger than adult stem cells, they can be developed into almost every type of cell within the human body.…

    • 904 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    hES cells are isolated from the blastocyst when the inner cell mass is removed and cultured in the lab. Once the hES cells have been isolated, they can continuously grow in a culture dish, containing a nutrient-rich culture medium. When the hES cells replicate and spread over the dish, some of the cells are removed to form a stem cell line. Many hES cells are taken from embryos developed from eggs that have been fertilised outside the woman’s body, which are then donated for research purposes. While hES can form all of the tissues in the body, they cannot form the other tissues that are required for a complete individual to form.…

    • 1130 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays