Essay about What Are Stem Cells?

1753 Words May 11th, 2015 8 Pages
What are Stem Cells?
A stem cell is defined as: “One of the human body 's master cells, with the ability to grow into any one of the body 's more than 200 cell types. Stem cells are unspecialized (undifferentiated) cells that are characteristically of the same family type (lineage). They retain the ability to divide throughout life and give rise to cells that can become highly specialized and take the place of cells that die or are lost. Stem cells contribute to the body 's ability to renew and repair its tissues.” (http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=10597) So then, stem cells can transform into almost any cell in our body. Stem cells have three common characteristics; they can divide and regenerate themselves for lengthy extents of time, they are not specialized, as well as they are able to transform into different highly specialized cells. There are “adult stem cells” which are unspecialized cells that are found amidst specialized cells in an organ or a tissue. These cells are present among these specialized cells and are non-dividing. The adult stem cells will begin to divide and turn into specialized cells when they are needed. The cells are activated when there are cells needed to maintain cells in specialized tissues or to repair tissue. (Bethesda, 2015) Recent research has been developed for stem cell therapies for various diseases. The Russian-American physician: Alexander A. Maximow is often given credit for the discovery of stem…

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