Stem cell From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Stem cell

Mouse embryonic stem cells with fluorescent marker

Human embryonic stem cell colony on mouse embryonic fibroblast feeder layer Latin cellula precursoria Code TH H2.

This article is about the cell type. For the medical therapy, see Stem Cell Treatments. Stem cells are biological cells found in all multicellular organisms, that can divide (throughmitosis) and differentiate into diverse specialized cell types and can self-renew to produce more stem cells. In mammals, there are two broad types of stem cells: embryonic stem cells, which are isolated from the inner cell mass of blastocysts, and adult stem cells, which are found in various tissues. In adult organisms, stem cells and progenitor cells act as a repair system for the body, replenishing adult tissues. In a developing embryo, stem cells can differentiate into all the specialized cells (these are called pluripotent cells), but also maintain the normal turnover of regenerative organs, such as blood, skin, or intestinal tissues. There are three sources of autologous adult stem cells: 1) Bone marrow, which requires extraction by harvesting, that is, drilling into bone (typically the femur or iliac crest), 2) Adipose tissue (lipid cells), which requires extraction by liposuction, and 3) Blood, which requires extraction through pheresis, wherein blood is drawn from the donor (similar to a blood donation), passed through a machine that extracts the stem cells and returns other portions of the blood to the donor. Stem cells can also be taken from umbilical cord blood. Of all stem cell types, autologous harvesting involves the least risk. By definition, autologous cells are obtained from one's own body, just as one may bank his or her own blood for elective surgical procedures. Highly plastic adult stem cells are routinely used in medical therapies, for example bone marrow transplantation. Stem cells can now be artificially grown and transformed (differentiated) into specialized cell types with characteristics consistent with cells of various tissues such as muscles or nerves through cell culture. Embryonic cell lines and autologousembryonic stem cells generated through therapeutic cloning have also been proposed as promising candidates for future therapies.[1] Research into

stem cells grew out of findings byErnest A. McCulloch and James E. Till at the University of Toronto in the 1960s.[2][3] Contents [hide]

           

1 Properties o 1.1 Self-renewal o 1.2 Potency definitions o 1.3 Identification 2 Embryonic 3 Fetal 4 Adult 5 Amniotic 6 Induced pluripotent 7 Lineage 8 Treatments 9 Research patents 10 Key research events 11 See also 12 References 13 External links Properties The classical definition of a stem cell requires that it possess two properties:

Self-renewal: the ability to go through numerous cycles of cell division while maintaining the undifferentiated state. Potency: the capacity to differentiate into specialized cell types. In the strictest sense, this requires stem cells to be either totipotent orpluripotent—to be able to give rise to any mature cell type, although multipotent or unipotent progenitor cells are sometimes referred to as stem cells. Apart from this it

is said that stem cell function is regulated in a feed back mechanism. Self-renewal Two mechanisms to ensure that a stem cell population is maintained exist: 1. Obligatory asymmetric replication: a stem cell divides into one father cell that is identical to the original stem cell, and another daughter cell that is differentiated 2. Stochastic differentiation: when one stem cell develops into two differentiated daughter cells, another stem cell undergoes mitosis and produces two stem cells identical to the original. Potency definitions

Pluripotent, embryonic stem cells originate as inner cell mass (ICM) cells within a blastocyst. These stem cells can become any tissue in the body, excluding a placenta. Only cells from an earlier

stage of the embryo, known as the morula, are totipotent, able to become all tissues in the body and the extraembryonic placenta.

Human embryonic stem cells A: Cell colonies that are not yet differentiated. B: Nerve cell Main article: Cell potency Potency specifies the differentiation potential (the potential to differentiate into different cell types) of the stem cell.[4]

Totipotent (a.k.a. omnipotent) stem cells can differentiate into embryonic and extraembryonic cell types. Such cells can construct a complete, viable organism.[4] These cells are produced from the fusion of an egg and sperm cell. Cells

e. Embryonic Main article: Embryonic stem cell . making it unclear whether the cells will behave in a similar manner in vivo. which can themselves be transplanted into another individual without HSCs. in vitro culture conditions can alter the behavior of cells.[7][8]Stem cells can also be isolated by their possession of a distinctive set of cell surface markers.g. In this case. a stem cell must be able to produce new blood cells and immune cells over a long term. Identification The practical definition of a stem cell is the functional definition—a cell that has the potential to regenerate tissue over a lifetime. their own.[4] [4]  Unipotent cells can produce only one cell type. Properties of stem cells can be illustrated in vitro. the defining test for a bone marrow or hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) is the ability to transplant one cell and save an individual without HSCs. such as lymphoid or myeloid stem cells. demonstrating that the stem cell was able to self-renew.produced by the first few divisions of the fertilized egg are also totipotent. which distinguishes them from non-stem cells (e. However.[6]  Multipotent stem cells can differentiate into a number of cells.. There is considerable debate as to whether some proposed adult cell populations are truly stem cells. in which single cells are assessed for their ability to differentiate and self-renew. but have the property of self-renewal.[4]  Oligopotent stem cells can differentiate into only a few cells. cells derived from any of the three germ layers. It should also be possible to isolate stem cells from the transplanted individual. using methods such as clonogenic assays.[5]  Pluripotent stem cells are the descendants of totipotent cells and can differentiate into nearly all cells. muscle stem cells).[4] i. but only those of a closely related family of cells. demonstrating potency. For example.

A human embryonic stem cell is also defined by the expression of several transcription factors and cell surface proteins.[11] Without optimal culture conditions or genetic manipulation. They do not contribute to the extra-embryonic membranes or the placenta. In other words. The .Embryonic stem (ES) cell lines are cultures of cells derived from the epiblast tissue of theinner cell mass (ICM) of a blastocyst or earlier morula stage embryos.[12] embryonic stem cells will rapidly differentiate. Mouse ES cells are grown on a layer of gelatin as an extracellular matrix (for support) and require the presence of leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF). blood—in essence.[10]Human ES cells are grown on a feeder layer of mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) and require the presence of basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF or FGF2). yet they require very different environments in order to maintain an undifferentiated state. ES cells are pluripotent and give rise during development to all derivatives of the three primary germ layers: ectoderm. bone. the ectoderm gives rise to the nervous system and skin. The endoderm is composed of the entire gut tube and the lungs. they can develop into each of the more than 200 cell types of the adult body when given sufficient and necessary stimulation for a specific cell type. The transcription factors Oct-4. everything else that connects the endoderm to the ectoderm. Nanog. endoderm and mesoderm.[13] The cell surface antigens most commonly used to identify hES cells are the glycolipids stage specific embryonic antigen 3 and 4 and the keratan sulfate antigens Tra-1-60 and Tra-1-81. Nearly all research to date has made use of mouse embryonic stem cells (mES) or human embryonic stem cells (hES).[9] A blastocyst is an early stage embryo—approximately four to five days old in humans and consisting of 50–150 cells. Both have the essential stem cell characteristics. and Sox2 form the core regulatory network that ensures the suppression of genes that lead to differentiation and the maintenance of pluripotency. and the mesoderm gives rise to muscle.

ES cells will differentiate into many different types of cells. Because of their combined abilities of unlimited expansion and pluripotency.[17] Many nations currently have moratoria on either ES cell research or the production of new ES cell lines. Fetal The primitive stem cells located in the organs of fetuses are referred to as fetal stem cells. Differentiating ES cells into usable cells while avoiding transplant rejection are just a few of the hurdles that embryonic stem cell researchers still face.[16] ES cells.molecular definition of a stem cell includes many more proteins and continues to be a topic of research. embryonic stem cells remain a theoretically potential source for regenerative medicine and tissue replacement after injury or disease. 2011 the company conducting the trial announced that it will discontinue further development of its stem cell programs.[14] There are currently no approved treatments using embryonic stem cells. On November 14. 2010 in Atlanta for spinal injury victims. causing a teratoma. the human trial was not initiated until October 13. require specific signals for correct differentiation—if injected directly into another body.[18] Adult Main article: Adult stem cell . being pluripotent cells.[15] However. The first human trial was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in January 2009.

3: progenitor division. pluripotent stem cells are directly generated from adult fibroblast cultures.[23][24] . they can be found in children. 2: asymmetric stem cell division. A: stem cell. as well as adults.[22] Most adult stem cells are lineage-restricted (multipotent) and are generally referred to by their tissue origin (mesenchymal stem cell. adipose-derived stem cell. Unfortunately. many mice do not live long with stem cell organs.[19] Pluripotent adult stem cells are rare and generally small in number but can be found in a number of tissues including umbilical cord blood. dental pulp stem cell. endothelial stem cell.[21]In mice.[20] A great deal of adult stem cell research to date has had the aim of characterizing the capacity of the cells to divide or self-renew indefinitely and their differentiation potential.). 1: symmetric stem cell division. 4: terminal differentiation Also known as somatic (from Greek Σωματικóς. C: differentiated cell. B: progenitor cell.Stem cell division and differentiation. "of the body") stem cells and germline (giving rise to gametes) stem cells. etc.

research and current or future therapies. nervous tissues. and a minimum of 29 different end organs. because the production of adult stem cells does not require the destruction of an embryo.[28] The stem cells eventually form enamel (ectoderm). .Adult stem cell treatments have been successfully used for many years to treat leukemia and related bone/blood cancers through bone marrow transplants. universities and research institutes are studying amniotic fluid to discover all the qualities of amniotic stem cells. more US government funding is being provided for adult stem cell research. these will probably constitute a major source of cells for personal banking. blood vessels. Because of extreme ease in collection at 8–10 years of age before calcification and minimal to no morbidity. These stem cells are very active. Additionally. in instances where adult stem cells are obtained from the intended recipient (an autograft). These stem cells have been shown capable of producing hepatocytes. the risk of rejection is essentially non-existent. and scientists such as Anthony Atala[30][31] and Giuseppe Simoni [32][33][34] have discovered important results.[29] All over the world. endothelial. myogenic.[26] The use of adult stem cells in research and therapy is not as controversial as the use of embryonic stem cells.[27] An extremely rich source for adult mesenchymal stem cells is the developing tooth bud of the mandibular third molar. hepatic and also neuronal lines.[citation needed] Amniotic Multipotent stem cells are also found in amniotic fluid. dental pulp. expand extensively without feeders and are not tumorigenic. dentin. Consequently.[25] Adult stem cells are also used in veterinary medicine to treat tendon and ligament injuries in horses. Amniotic stem cells are multipotent and can differentiate in cells of adipogenic. periodontal ligament. osteogenic.

MA. Ian Wilmut. and their colleagues at the University of Wisconsin–Madison used a different set of factors. accordingly. pluripotent stem cells equivalent to embryonic stem cells have been derived from human adult skin tissue. opening a new avenue for obtaining the valued cells. Using genetic reprogramming with protein transcription factors. Junying Yu. and Klf4[42] in their experiments on cells from human faces. Roman Catholicteaching forbids the use of embryonic stem cells in experimentation. Nanog and Lin28.g. As a result of the success of these experiments.[41] Induced pluripotent Main article: Induced pluripotent stem cell These are not adult stem cells. James Thomson. but rather adult cells (e.[35] It is possible to collect amniotic stem cells for donors or for autologuous use: the first US amniotic stem cells bank [36][37] was opened in 2009 in Medford. Sox2.[45] Frozen blood samples can be used as a source of induced pluripotent stem cells.[42][43][44] Shinya Yamanaka and his colleagues at Kyoto University used the transcription factors Oct3/4. Sox2. epithelial cells) reprogrammed to give rise to pluripotent capabilities.Use of stem cells from amniotic fluid overcomes the ethical objections to using human embryos as a source of cells. c-Myc. Oct4. who helped create the first cloned animal Dolly the Sheep. has announced that he will abandon somatic cell nuclear transfer as an avenue of research.[46] . by Biocell Center Corporation [38][39][40] and collaborates with various hospitals and universities all over the world.[42] and carried out their experiments using cells from human foreskin. the Vatican newspaper "Osservatore Romano" called amniotic stem cells "the future of medicine".

Asymmetric division. stem cells undergo two types of cell division (see Stem cell division and differentiation diagram). Stem cells differentiate when they leave that niche or no longer receive those signals. Initial studies indicate that transformation of mice cells with a combination of these anti-differentiation signals can reverse differentiation and may allow adult cells to become pluripotent.[22] However. it was recently determined that the somatic expression of combined transcription factors can directly induce other defined somatic cell fates.[47] An alternative theory is that stem cells remain undifferentiated due to environmental cues in their particular niche.Lineage Main article: Stem cell line To ensure self-renewal. These signal pathways include severaltranscription factors including the oncogene c-Myc. researchers identified three neural-lineage-specific transcription factors that . on the other hand. Symmetric division gives rise to two identical daughter cells both endowed with stem cell properties. It is possible that the molecular distinction between symmetric and asymmetric divisions lies in differential segregation of cell membrane proteins (such as receptors) between the daughter cells.[48][49] Main article: Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell The signals that lead to reprogramming of cells to an embryoniclike state are also being investigated. Challenging the terminal nature of cellular differentiation and the integrity of lineage commitment. produces only one stem cell and a progenitor cell with limited self-renewal potential. Studies in Drosophila germarium have identified the signals decapentaplegicand adherens junctions that prevent germarium stem cells from differentiating. Progenitors can go through several rounds of cell division before terminallydifferentiating into a mature cell. the need to transform these cells with an oncogene may prevent the use of this approach in therapy.

Parkinson's disease. amongst a number of other impairments and conditions.could directly convert mouse fibroblasts (skin cells) into fully functional neurons. and muscle damage.[53][54] However. medical researchers anticipate being able to use technologies derived from stem cell research to treat a wider variety of diseases including cancer.[50] Treatments Main article: Stem cell treatments Diseases and conditions where stem cell treatment is promising or emerging.[52] In the future. there still exists a great deal of social and scientific uncertainty .Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. multiple sclerosis. particularly bone marrow transplants that are used to treat leukemia. This "induced neurons" (iN) cell research inspires the researchers to induce other cell types implies that all cells are totipotent: with the proper tools. as of 2009. the only established use of stem cells. spinal cord injuries.[51] Bone marrow transplantation is. all cells may form all kinds of tissue. Medical researchers believe that stem cell therapy has the potential to dramatically change the treatment of human disease. A number of adult stem cell therapies already exist.

One concern of treatment is the risk that transplanted stem cells could form tumors and become cancerous if cell division continues uncontrollably. 2011). to recover some of the previously sold rights. which could possibly be overcome through public debate and future research. but it is still not completely clear whether hiPS cells are equivalent to hES cells.843.913 US Patent and Trademark Office were filed by non- ..806. WARF came under public pressure to widen access to human stem-cell technology.[56] Supporters of embryonic stem cell research argue that such research should be pursued because the resultant treatments could have significant medical potential.[55] Stem cells are widely studied. Recent work demonstrates hotspots of aberrant epigenomic reprogramming in hiPS cells (Lister. exclusive rights to work on human stem cells but later sued Geron Corp. The recent development of iPS cells has been called a bypass of the legal controversy. The two sides agreed that Geron Corp.[57] A request for reviewing the WARF patents 5. 6.. WARF does not charge academics to study human stem cells but does charge commercial users.780. would keep the rights to only three cell types. et al.surrounding stem cell research.200. Laws limiting the destruction of human embryos have been credited for being the reason for development of iPS cells. It has been proposed that surplus embryos created for in vitro fertilization could be donated with consent and used for the research. In 2001. Research patents The patents covering a lot of work on human embryonic stem cells are owned by the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF). 7. and further education of the public.029. WARF sold Geron Corp. for their potential therapeutic use and for their inherent interest. R.

According to them. 1968: Bone marrow transplant between two siblings successfully treats SCID. as it can only license patents that are upheld. and the Public Patent Foundation as well as molecular biologist Jeanne Loring of the Burnham Institute. Another part of the challenge states that these techniques.913 was rejected in 2010. Based on this challenge. Matthew Kaufman. Thomson. patent 7. 1960s: Joseph Altman and Gopal Das present scientific evidence of adult neurogenesis. The outcome of this legal challenge is particularly relevant to the Geron Corp. 1992: Neural stem cells are cultured in vitro as neurospheres. 1978: Haematopoietic stem cells are discovered in human cord blood. 1963: McCulloch and Till illustrate the presence of selfrenewing cells in mouse bone marrow. like André Gernez. ongoing stem cell activity in the brain.[58] Key research events        1908: The term "stem cell" was proposed for scientific use by the Russian histologist Alexander Maksimov (1874–1928) at congress of hematologic society in Berlin. two of the patents granted to WARF are invalid because they cover a technique published in 1993 for which a patent had already been granted to an Australian researcher. and Gail R. Gail Martin is attributed for coining the term "Embryonic Stem Cell". The two remaining hES WARF patents are due to expire in 2015. their reports contradict Cajal's "no new neurons" dogma and are largely ignored.profit patent-watchdogs The Foundation for Taxpayer & Consumer Rights. developed by James A. . Martin. It postulated existence of haematopoietic stem cells. 1981: Mouse embryonic stem cells are derived from the inner cell mass by scientists Martin Evans. are rendered obvious by a 1990 paper and two textbooks.029.

          1997: Leukemia is shown to originate from a haematopoietic stem cell. dubbed cordblood-derived embryonic-like stem cells (CBEs).[63] . 2000s: Several reports of adult stem cell plasticity are published. 1998: James Thomson and coworkers derive the first human embryonic stem cell line at the University of Wisconsin– Madison.[62] August 2006: Mouse Induced pluripotent stem cells: the journal Cell publishes Kazutoshi Takahashi and Shinya Yamanaka. Songtao Shi of NIH discovers new source of adult stem cells in children's primary teeth. 2005: Researchers at Kingston University in England claim to have discovered a third category of stem cell.[61] 2004–2005: Korean researcher Hwang Woo-Suk claims to have created several human embryonic stem cell lines from unfertilised humanoocytes.[60] 2003: Dr. the first direct evidence for cancer stem cells. The group claims these cells are able to differentiate into more types of tissue than adult stem cells. The lines were later shown to be fabricated.[59] 1998: John Gearhart (Johns Hopkins University) extracted germ cells from fetal gonadal tissue (primordial germ cells) before developing pluripotent stem cell lines from the original extract. 2001: Scientists at Advanced Cell Technology clone first early (four. derived from umbilical cord six-cell stage) human embryos for the purpose of generating embryonic stem cells. 2005: Researchers at UC Irvine's Reeve-Irvine Research Center are able to partially restore the ability of rats with paralyzed spines to walk through the injection of human neural stem cells.

[68] In the same month. scientist Shoukhrat Mitalipov reports the first successful creation of a primate stem cell line through somatic cell nuclear transfer[69] Martin Evans.[67] June 2007: Research reported by three different groups shows that normal skin cells can be reprogrammed to an embryonic state in mice.[70] . and Oliver Smithies win the 2007 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for their work on embryonic stem cells from mice using gene targeting strategies producing genetically engineered mice (known as knockout mice) for gene research. a co-winner of the Nobel Prize in recognition of his gene targeting work.  October 2007: Mario Capecchi.   October 2006: Scientists at Newcastle University in England create the first ever artificial liver cells using umbilical cord blood stem cells.[64][65] January 2007: Scientists at Wake Forest University led by Dr.[66] This may potentially provide an alternative to embryonic stem cells for use in research and therapy. Anthony Atala and Harvard University report discovery of a new type of stem cell in amniotic fluid. Martin Evans.

It is possible now to produce a stem cell from almost any other human cell instead of using embryos as needed previously.. "Induction of pluripotent stem cells from adult human fibroblasts by defined factors".[71] and in Science by Junying Yu.      November 2007: Human induced pluripotent stem cells: Two similar papers released by their respective journals prior to formal publication: in Cell by Kazutoshi Takahashi and Shinya Yamanaka. et al. from the research group of James Thomson. albeit the risk of tumorigenesis due to c-myc and retroviral gene transfer remains to be determined. moreover genes that are required for iPS cells do not need to be inserted into specific sites. January 2008: Robert Lanza and colleagues at Advanced Cell Technology and UCSF create the first human embryonic stem cells without destruction of the embryo[73] January 2008: Development of human cloned blastocysts following somatic cell nuclear transfer with adult fibroblasts[74] February 2008: Generation of pluripotent stem cells from adult mouse liver and stomach: these iPS cells seem to be more similar to embryonic stem cells than the previously developed iPS cells and not tumorigenic. which encourages the development of non-viral reprogramming techniques. Germany generate pluripotent stem cells from spermatogonial cells of adult human testis by culturing the cells in vitro under leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) supplementation. "Induced pluripotent stem cell lines derived from human somatic cells":[72] pluripotent stem cells generated from mature human fibroblasts.[75] March 2008-The first published study of successful cartilage regeneration in the human knee using autologous adult mesenchymal stem cells is published by clinicians from Regenerative Sciences[76] October 2008: Sabine Conrad and colleagues at Tübingen.[77] .

Many medical researchers believe that stem cell treatments have the potential to change the face of human disease and alleviate suffering. because mitochondrial genomes tend to accumulate mutations.[87]  25 October 2010: Ishikawa et al. Keisuke Kaji.[79][80][81] The use of electroporation is said to allow for the temporary insertion of genes into the cell.[86]  11 October 2010 First trial of embryonic stem cells in humans. claiming it to be the 'ultimate stem cell solution'.30 October 2008: Embryonic-like stem cells from a single human hair. et al. a breakthrough that could save animals in danger of extinction.[82][83][84][85]  28 May 2009 Kim et al. the free encyclopedia Stem cell treatments are a type of intervention strategy that introduces new cells into damaged tissue in order to treat disease or injury. announced that they had devised a way to manipulate skin cells to create patient specific "induced pluripotent stem cells" (iPS). discover a way to produce embryonic-like stem cells from normal adult cells by using a novel "wrapping" procedure to deliver specific genes to adult cells to reprogram them into stem cells without the risks of using a virus to make the change.[1]The ability of stem cells to selfrenew and give rise to subsequent generations with variable  .[78]  1 March 2009: Andras Nagy.[89] Stem cell treatments From Wikipedia. Tissues made from a person's stem cells could therefore be rejected. write in the Journal of Experimental Medicine that research shows that transplanted cells that contain their new host's nuclear DNA could still be rejected by the invidual's immune system due to foreign mitochondrial DNA.[88]  2011: Israeli scientist Inbar Friedrich Ben-Nun led a team which produced the first stem cells from endangered species.

cardiac failure.1 Brain damage o 2.9 Blindness and vision impairment o 2.8 Deafness o 2.degrees of differentiation capacities.5 Haematopoiesis (blood cell formation) o 2.[3] Nevertheless. with minimal risk of rejection and side effects.3 Spinal cord injury o 2. Type 1 diabetes mellitus. See also: Cell therapy A number of stem cell therapies exist. Celiac Disease. with the notable exception of bone marrow transplantation. before stem cell therapeutics can be applied in the clinical setting. and many others.4 Heart damage o 2. more research is necessary to understand stem cell behavior upon transplantation as well as the mechanisms of stem cell interaction with the diseased/injured microenvironment.10 Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis .7 Missing teeth o 2.6 Baldness o 2.[3] Contents [hide]   1 Current treatments 2 Potential treatments o 2. but most are at experimental stages or costly. muscle damage and neurological disorders.[citation needed] Medical researchers anticipate that adult and embryonic stem cells will soon be able to treat cancer.[2] offers significant potential for generation of tissues that can potentially replace diseased and damaged areas in the body.2 Cancer o 2. Parkinson's disease. Huntington's disease.

and more recently. bone marrow.1 Potential contributions to veterinary medicine  4.4 Developments in Stem Cell Treatments in Veterinary Internal Medicine 5 Embryonic stem cell controversy 6 Stem cell treatments around the world o 6.1.4 Ukraine 7 See also 8 External links 9 References o [edit]Current treatments Further information: Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation For over 30 years.       2.[4] During chemotherapy.14 Orthopaedics o 2.1.15 Wound healing o 2.2 Sources of autologous (patient-derived) stem cells  4.3 South Korea o 6. host disease and Crohn's disease o Development of regenerative treatment models  4.3 Currently available treatments for horses and dogs suffering from orthopaedic conditions  4.2. have been used to treat cancer patients with conditions such as leukaemia and lymphoma.1 Veterinary applications  4. umbilical cord blood stem cells.2 Mexico o 6.11 Graft vs.13 Diabetes o 2. most .1 China o 6.12 Neural and behavioral birth defects o 2.16 Infertility 3 Clinical Trials 4 Stem cell use in animals o 4.1 Significance of stem cell microenvironments 

growing cells are killed by the cytotoxic agents. It is this side effect of conventional chemotherapy strategies that the stem cell transplant attempts to reverse. however. Within days. the cells migrated into the cancerous area and produced cytosine deaminase. and the hematopoietic stem cells within the bone marrow. substantial recovery is rarely observed in adults. [edit]Potential treatments [edit]Brain damage Stroke and traumatic brain injury lead to cell death. brain cancer is difficult to treat because it spreads so rapidly. an enzyme . and has shown to be successful in the treatment of some dogs. Using conventional techniques.[citation needed] Although the reparative process appears to initiate following trauma to the brain. These agents. Researchers at the Harvard Medical School transplanted human neural stem cells into the brain of rodents that received intracranial tumours. Stem cells may also be used to treat brain degeneration.[7] although research in this area is still at an early stage. characterized by a loss of neurons and oligodendrocytes within the brain. cannot discriminate between the leukaemia or neoplastic cells. in pregnancy and after injury. suggesting a lack of robustness. Interestingly. this system appears to be regulated by growth factors and can increase the rate at which new brain matter is formed. or become progenitor cells.[5][6] [edit]Cancer The development of gene therapy strategies for treatment of intracranial tumours offers much promise. such as in Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease. a donor's healthy bone marrow reintroduces functional stem cells to replace the cells lost in the host's body during treatment. In healthy adult animals. progenitor cells migrate within the brain and function primarily to maintain neuron populations for olfaction (the sense of smell). Healthy adult brains contain neural stem cells which divide to maintain general stem cell numbers.

[8] Some researchers believe that the key to finding a cure for cancer is to inhibit proliferation of cancer stem cells. the scientists isolated adult stem cells from umbilical cord blood and then injected them into the damaged part of the spinal cord. Accordingly. without difficulty. thus insulating neural impulses and facilitating communication with the brain. The observed recovery was associated with differentiation of transplanted cells into new neurons and oligodendrocytes. current cancer treatments are designed to kill cancer cells. resulting in locomotor improvements four months later. and stem cells injected. As a result.that converts a non-toxic pro-drug into a chemotheraputic agent. University of California.[10][11] According to the October 7. However.the latter of which forms the myelin sheath around axons of the central nervous system. The stem cells neither differentiated nor turned tumorigenic. Essentially. she could walk on her own. The patient had not been able to stand up for roughly 19 years.[12] . the injected substance was able to reduce the tumor mass by 81 percent. 2005 issue of The Week.[9] Research on treating Lymphoma using adult stem cells is underway and has had human trials. 2003. [edit]Spinal cord injury A team of Korean researchers reported on November 25. chemotherapy is used to completely destroy the patients own lymphocytes. conventional chemotherapy treatments cannot discriminate between cancerous cells and others. that they had transplanted multipotent adult stem cells from umbilical cord blood to a patient suffering from a spinal cord injury and that following the procedure. For the unprecedented clinical test. Irvine researchers transplanted multipotent human fetal-derived neural stem cells into paralyzed mice. eventually replacing the immune system of the patient with that of the healthy donor. Stem cell therapies may serve as potential treatments for cancer.

in the human body. and spinal cord injuries. and equally efficient in treating old and recent infarcts. researchers at the University of Wisconsin– Madison differentiated human blastocyst stem cells into neural stem cells.In January 2005. If functional. transmits messages from thebrain to the spinal cord and subsequently mediates motor function in the periphery.[13] Adult stem cell therapy for treating heart disease was commercially available in at least five continents at the last count (2007). where each step has different conditions and a strict window of time. and finally into spinal motor neurons. the cell type that. Accordingly. the signature action of neurons. While Zhang's findings were a significant contribution to the field.[citation needed] [edit]Heart damage Several clinical trials targeting heart disease have shown that adult stem cell therapy is safe. the ability of transplanted neural cells to establish communication with neighboring cells remains unclear. the new cells could be used to treat diseases like Lou Gehrig's disease. studies using chicken embryos as a model organism can be an effective proof-of-concept experiment. effective. Lead researcher Su-Chun Zhang described the process as "[teaching] the blastocyst stem cells to change step by step. The newly generated motor neurons exhibited electrical activity. Possible mechanisms of recovery include:[5]     Generation of heart muscle cells Stimulation of growth of new blood vessels to repopulate damaged heart tissue Secretion of growth factors Assistance via some other mechanism ." Transformation of blastocyst stem cells into motor neurons had eluded researchers for decades. then into pre-mature motor neurons. muscular dystrophy.

[edit]Baldness Hair follicles also contain stem cells.[5] [edit]Haematopoiesis (blood cell formation) The specificity of the human immune cell repertoire is what allows the human body to defend itself from rapidly adapting antigens. and because of the critical role that it plays in overall defense. its degradation is often fatal to the organism as a whole. HSCs are grown together with stromal cells. and some researchers predict research on these follicle stem cells may lead to successes in treatingbaldness through an activation of the stem cells progenitor cells. which are precursors of red blood cells. In this process. However. the immune system is vulnerable to degradation upon the pathogenesis of disease. blood transfusion. the natural site of red blood cell growth. and topical medicine.It may be possible to have adult bone marrow cells differentiate into heart muscle cells. causing further challenges in the treatment of immune disease. Identical matches between donor and recipient must be made for successful transplantation treatments. even between first-degree relatives. Research using both hematopoietic adult stem cells and embryonic stem cells has provided insight into the possible mechanisms and methods of treatment for many of these ailments. This treatment is expected to work by activating already existing stem cells on the scalp. Later .[citation needed] Fully mature human red blood cells may be generated ex vivo by hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs). coaxing the stem cells to complete terminal differentiation into red blood cells. Erythropoietin. Diseases of hematopoietic cells are called hematopathology. a growth factor. but matches are uncommon.[14] Further research into this technique should have potential benefits to gene therapy. creating an environment that mimics the conditions of bone marrow. is added. The specificity of the immune cells is what allows recognition of foreign antigens.

"Sheets of retinal cells used by the team are harvested from aborted fetuses. however. before stem cells could be a choice for the replacement of missing teeth in the future.treatments may be able to simply signal follicle stem cells to give off chemical signals to nearby follicle cells which have shrunk during the aging process. [edit]Missing teeth In 2004.[19] The latest such . the stem cells stimulate renewed repair. The process is similar to what happens when humans grow their original adult teeth. In theory.[17] [edit]Deafness Heller has reported success in re-growing cochlea hair cells with the use of embryonic stem cells. stem cells taken from the patient could be coaxed in the lab into turning into a tooth bud which. which some people find objectionable. Aeron Potter of the University of California has claimed that stem cell therapy led to a significant and visible improvement in follicular hair growth[citation needed].[16] It will fuse with the jawbone and release chemicals that encourage nerves and blood vessels to connect with it. eventually restore vision. and would be expected to grow within two months. Many challenges remain. Researchers are confident that this technology can be used to grow live teeth in human patients. which in turn respond to these signals by regenerating and once again making healthy hair." When these sheets are transplanted over the damaged cornea. Most recently. researchers have successfully transplanted corneal stem cells into damaged eyes to restore vision. Dr. scientists at King's College London discovered a way to cultivate a complete tooth in mice[15] and were able to grow them stand-alone in the laboratory. will give rise to a new tooth. Results from his experiments are under review by the journal Science (journal). when implanted in the gums.[18] [edit]Blindness and vision impairment Since 2003.

Sheraz Daya.[22] In January 2012. England were able to restore the sight of forty patients using the same technique. which is the transparent window of the eye. when researchers at the Queen Victoria Hospital of Sussex. doctors in the UK transplanted corneal stem cells from an organ donor to the cornea of Deborah Catlyn. The cornea. a woman who was blinded in one eye when acid was thrown in her eye at a nightclub.development was in June 2005. researchers at the University of Pittsburgh Medical center demonstrated that stem cells collected from human corneas can restore transparency without provoking a rejection response in mice with corneal damage.[20] In April 2005. is a particularly suitable site for transplants. the first successful human transplant was a cornea transplant. Further rounds of trials are ongoing. The absence of blood vessels within the cornea makes this area a relatively easy target for transplantation.[21] In 2009. The Lancet published a paper[23] by Dr. led by Dr. The group. In a rodent model that closely mimics the human form of ALS. [edit]Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis Stem cells have resulted in significant locomotor improvements in rats with an Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-like disease. reporting two women who had gone legally blind from macular degeneration had dramatic improvements in their vision after retinal injections of human embryonic stem cells. or even a cadaver. Steven Schwartz. The majority of corneal transplants carried out today are due to a degenerative disease called keratoconus. The University Hospital of New Jersey reports that the success rate for growth of new cells from transplanted stem cells varies from 25 percent to 70 percent. was able to successfully use adult stem cells obtained from the patient. at UCLA's Jules Stein Eye Institute. animals were injected with a virus to kill the spinal cord motor nerves which . a relative. In fact.

On the molecular level. which was supported by the US National Institutes of Health. derived from adult bone marrow. Animals subsequently received stem cells in the spinal cord. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. . and restored locomotor function. as shown both in behavioral tests and objective brain chemistry tests. providing results that rivaled non-treated mice. the researchers discovered that the stem cells worked even in cases where most of the cells died out in the host brain. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. host disease and Crohn's disease Phase III clinical trials expected to end in second-quarter 2008 were conducted by Osiris Therapeutics using their indevelopment product Prochymal. (August 2010) A team of researchers led by Prof. the US-Israel Binational Science Foundation and the Israel anti-drug authorities. Transplanted cells migrated to the sites of injury. Behavioral tests and learning scores of the treated mice showed rapid improvement after treatment.[26][27] This was done by direct neural stem cell transplantation into the brains of the offspring.[24] [edit]Graft vs. Joseph Yanai were able to reverse learning deficits in the offspring of pregnant mice who were exposed to heroin and the pesticide organophosphate. contributed to regeneration of the ablated nerve cells. The target disorders of this therapeutic are graft-versushost disease and Crohn's disease. Through the work.mediate movement. The recovery was almost 100 percent. brain chemistry of the treated animals was also restored to normal.[25] [edit]Neural and behavioral birth defects This section needs additional citations for verification.

the focus in the literature for  . To date. the approach will also eliminate the controversial ethical issues involved in the use of stem cells from human embryos.[28] [edit]Diabetes Diabetes patients lose the function of insulin-producing beta cells within the pancreas. However. Human embryonic stem cells may be grown in cell culture and stimulated to form insulin-producing cells that can be transplanted into the patient. turn them into stem cells. Molecular Psychiatry. These findings. making therapy practical and clinically feasible. Aside from decreasing the chances of immunological rejection. Scientists are now developing procedures to administer the neural stem cells in the least invasive way possible . were published in January 2008 in the leading journal. which answered a major question in the stem cell research community.probably via blood vessels. Researchers also plan to work on developing methods to take cells from the patient's own body.The scientists found that before they die the neural stem cells succeed in inducing the host brain to produce large numbers of stem cells which repair the damage. clinical success is highly dependent on the development of the following procedures:[5] Transplanted cells should proliferate  Transplanted cells should differentiate in a site-specific manner  Transplanted cells should survive in the recipient (prevention of transplant rejection)  Transplanted cells should integrate within the targeted tissue  Transplanted cells should integrate into the host circuitry and restore function [edit]Orthopaedics Clinical case reports in the treatment of orthopaedic conditions have been reported. and then transplant them back into the patient's blood via the blood stream.

wounded tissue is most often replaced by scar tissue. loss of hair follicles and irregular vascular structure. a published safety study conducted in a group of 227 patients over a 3-4 year period shows adequate safety and minimal complications associated with mesenchymal cell transplantation. Centeno et al. have published MRI evidence of increased cartilage and meniscus volume in individual human subjects. This method elicits a regenerative response more similar to fetal wound-healing than adult scar tissue formation.[34] Human embryonic stem cells have been stimulated to form Spermatozoon-like cells.[31] Wakitani has also published a small case series of nine defects in five knees involving surgical transplantation of mesenchymal stem cells with coverage of the treated chondral defects. as evidenced by gene expression analysis. wounded tissue is replaced with normal tissue through the activity of stem cells.[33] A possible method for tissue regeneration in adults is to place adult stem cell "seeds" inside a tissue bed "soil" in a wound bed and allow the stem cells to stimulate differentiation in the tissue bed cells. In the case of wounded fetal tissue. However. which is characterized in the skin by disorganized collagen structure.musculoskeletal care appears to be on mesenchymal stem cells.[35] It could potentially treat azoospermia. are yet to be published.[33] [edit]Infertility Culture of human embryonic stem cells in mitotically inactivated porcine ovarian fibroblasts (POF) causes differentiation into germ cells(precursor cells of oocytes and spermatozoa).[29][30] The results of trials that include a large number of subjects. In an adult. .[33] Researchers are still investigating different aspects of the "soil" tissue that are conducive to regeneration. yet still slightly damaged or malformed.[32] [edit]Wound healing Stem cells can also be used to stimulate the growth of human tissues. however.

2009.[edit]Clinical Trials On January 23. and cats can benefit the development of stem-cell treatments in veterinary medicine and can target a wide range of injuries and diseases such as myocardial infarction.[36] As of mid 2010 hundreds of phase III clinical trials involving stem cells have been registered.[38][39][40][41] While investigation of cell-based therapeutics generally reflects human medical needs. dogs. osteoarthriti s.[43][44] [edit]Development of regenerative treatment models Veterinary applications of stem cell therapy as a means of tissue regeneration have been largely shaped by research . The trial was dicontinued in November 2011 so that the company could focus on therapies in the "current environment of capital scarcity and uncertain economic conditions‖. the US Food and Drug Administration gave clearance to Geron Corporation for the initiation of the first clinical trial of an embryonic stem cell-based therapy on humans. The trial aimed evaluate the drug GRNOPC1.[42] Companion animals can serve as clinically relevant models that closely mimic human disease. as well as humans.osteochondrosis and muscular dystrophy both in large animals. embryonic stem cellderived oligodendrocyteprogenitor cells.[37] [edit]Stem cell use in animals [edit]Veterinary applications [edit]Potential contributions to veterinary medicine Research currently conducted on horses. on patients with acute spinal cord injury. the high degree of frequency and severity of certain injuries in racehorses has put veterinary medicine at the forefront of this novel regenerative approach. stroke. tendon and ligament damage.

[52][53] While further studies are necessary to fully characterize the use of cell-based therapeutics for treatment of bone fractures. suggesting that mesenchymal stem cell use may provide a useful alternative to conventional grafting techniques. mesenchymal stem cells are often derived from the patient prior to injection in a process known asautologous transplantation.[45][46][47] Because mesenchymal stem cells can differentiate into the cells that make up bone.[46][48] Mesenchymal stem cells are primarily derived from adipose tissue or bone marrow. Since an elevated immune response following cell transplantation may result in rejection of exogenous cells (except in the case of cells derived from a very closely genetically related individual). they have been the main type of stem cells studied in the treatment of diseases affecting these tissues. such as endothelial progenitor cells.that began with the use of adult-derived mesenchymal stem cells to treat animals with injuries or defects affecting bone. ligaments and/or tendons. stem cells are thought to mediate repair via five primary mechanisms: 1) providing an antiinflammatory effect. has support in the veterinary literature. and possibly other tissues). cartilage. whether derived from adipose tissue or bone-marrow. that are necessary for tissue growth. and ligaments (as well as muscle. fat.[49] Surgical repair of bone fractures in dogs and sheep has demonstrated that engraftment of mesenchymal stem cells derived from a genetically different donor within the same species. tendons.[50][51] Treating tendon and ligament injuries in horses using stem cells. does not elicit an immunological response in the recipient animal and can mediate regeneration of bone tissue in major bony fractures and defects.[50][51]Stem cells can speed up bone repair in fractures/defects that would normally require extensive grafting. termed allogeneic transplantation. 2) homing to damaged tissues and recruiting other cells. cartilage. 3) supporting tissue .

[3][49][51] To further enrich blood supply to the damaged areas. and 5) differentiating into bone. are cultured in specialized laboratories for expansion to millions of cells. platelet-rich plasma could be used in conjunction with stem cell transplantation.[53][54] [edit]Significance of stem cell microenvironments The microenvironment into which stem cells are transplanted significantly alters the capacity of engrafted cells for recovery and repair.remodeling over scar formation. Accordingly. for instance.[49][55] The efficacy of some stem cell populations may also be affected by the method of delivery. and consequently promote tissue regeneration. Repair and recovery can then be mediated via three primary mechanisms: 1) formation and/or recruitment of new blood cells to the damaged region.[3][49][51][55] [edit]Sources of autologous (patient-derived) stem cells Autologous stem cells intended for regenerative therapy are generally isolated either from the patient's bone marrow or from adipose tissue.[51][55] Although adipose-derived tissue also requires processing prior to use. and ligament tissue. for instance. tendon. stem cells are often introduced in a scaffold where they produce the minerals necessary for generation of functional bone. 2) prevention of programed cell death or apoptosis. to regenerate bone. cartilage. The number of stem cells transplanted into damaged tissue may alter efficacy of treatment. 4) inhibitingapoptosis. stem cells derived from bone marrow aspirates. the culturing methodology for adipose-derived stem cells is not as . The microenviroment provides growth factors and other chemical signals that guide appropriate differentiation of transplanted cell populations and direct transplanted cells to sites of trauma or disease. and 3) suppression of inflammation.

and sub-chondral bone cysts have been commercially available to practicing veterinarians to treat horses since 2003 in the United States and since 2006 in the United Kingdom. neurologic disease. and 2) dogs and cats suffering from . Over 3000 privately-owned horses and dogs have been treated with autologous adipose-derived stem cells. tendon injury.[52][53] [edit]Developments in Stem Cell Treatments in Veterinary Internal Medicine Currently.[59][60] The efficacy of using stem cells. ligament. The efficacy of these treatments has been shown in double-blind clinical trials for dogs with osteoarthritis of the hip and elbow and horses with tendon damage. osteoarthritis. for treating tendon and ligament injuries in horses has support in the veterinary literature. cartilage. osteochondr osis. and osteoarthritis in dogs have been available to veterinarians in the United States since 2005.[49] [edit]Currently available treatments for horses and dogs suffering from orthopaedic conditions Autologous or allogeneic stem cells are currently used as an adjunctive therapy in the surgical repair of some types of fractures in dogs and horses.[51][58] Autologous stem cellbased treatments for ligament injury. others believe that the less challenging collection techniques and the multi-cellular microenvironment already present in adipose-derived stem cell fractions make the latter the preferred source for autologous transplantation. research is being conducted to develop stem cell treatments for: 1) horses suffering from COPD.[56][57] While it is thought that bone-marrow derived stem cells are preferred for bone.extensive as that for bone marrow-derived cells. and tendon repair. Autologous stem-cell based treatments for tendon injury. whether adipose-derived or bone-marrow derived. andlaminitis. ligament injury.

and Australia.[61] [edit]Stem cell treatments around the world [edit]China Stem cell research and treatment is currently being practiced at a clinical level in the People's Republic of China. The Ministry of Health of the People's Republic of China has permitted the use of stem cell therapy for conditions beyond those approved of in Western countries such as the United States. despite the overwhelmingly positive anecdotal results. State-funded companies based in . This controversy primarily targets the techniques used to derive new embryonic stem cell lines. and immune-mediated disorder [edit]Embryonic stem cell controversy Main article: Stem cell controversy There is widespread controversy over the use of human embryonic stem cells. liver disease.[62] Stem cell therapies provided in China utilize a variety of cell types including umbilical cord stem cells and olfactory ensheathing cells. which often requires the destruction of the blastocyst. The Western World has scrutinized China for its failed attempts to meet international documentation standards of these trials and procedures. kidney disease. United Kingdom. The stem cells are then expanded in centralized blood banks before being used in stem cell treatments.heart disease. Opposition to the use of human embryonic stem cells in research is often based on philosophical. moral or religious objections. neurologic disease.

were unknown. An International Health Department Permit (COFEPRIS) is required. Western regulatory agencies advise patients and physicians to be cautious when selecting Chinese stem cell therapeutic centers. retrospective studies have shown that Chinese use of fetal-derived brain tissue in spinal cord injured human subjects were not as promising as once thought: the phenotype and the fate of the transplanted cells. These therapies administer stem cells directly to the brain to promote greater motor and brain function in patients with Cerebral Palsy. However.[63] In the absence of a valid clinical trials protocol. This . and more regulatory oversight. Hospitals throughout eastern China provide numerous therapies to patients in coordination with the stem cell providers. and brain injuries.[62] [edit]Mexico Stem cell treatment is currently being practiced at a clinical level in Mexico. perioperative morbidity and lack of functional benefit were identified as the most serious clinical shortcomings.[62] Furthermore. described as olfactory ensheathing cells. As well.theShenzhen Hi-Tech Industrial Zone treat the symptoms of numerous disorders with adult stem cell therapy. These companies' therapies are currently focused on the treatment of neurodegenerative and cardiovascular disorder s. the extent of regulatory policy in the use of stem cell therapies in China is unclear. Alzheimer's. The most radical successes of Chinese adult stem cell therapy have been in treating the brain.

[edit]South Korea In 2005. Each of the 11 new stem cell lines was developed using somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) technology. Bone Marrow. multiple sclerosis. admitted to using cells obtained from his research staff. The first medical institution granted the right to conduct clinical trials became the "Institute of Cell Therapy"(Kiev). however.Dr. claims were put forward that his research had been manipulated to wrongfully indicate positive results. burn disease.permit allows the use of stem cell types beyond those approved of in Western countries such as the United States or Europe.[65] [edit]Ukraine Today. was eventually discredited as the primary researcher. 2008) for the treatment of these pathologies: pancreatic necrosis. The resultant cells were thought to match the genetic material of the recipient. thus suggesting minimal to no cell rejection. South Korean scientists claimed to have generated stem cells that were tailored to match the recipient. Ukraine is permitted to perform clinical trials of stem cell treatments (Order of the MH of Ukraine № 630 "About carrying out clinical trials of stem cells".[64] This study. these claims were confirmed by an academic panel. or Donor Placenta sources. Woo Suk Hwang. cirrhosis. critical lower limb ischemia. diabetes. hepatitis. Stem cell therapies provided in Mexico utilize patient Adipose. Later that month.[citation needed] In Dec 2005. .

3 Moral and Ethical concerns o 2. use.Stem cell controversy From Wikipedia.5 Viability o 2.2 Efficiency  2.1. amniotic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells do not involve human embryos at all. (January 2011) The stem cell controversy is the ethical debate primarily concerning the creation.1 Human potential and humanity  2.1 Endorsement  2.1. Contents [hide]     1 Background 2 Viewpoints o "Better alternatives" 3 Ethical Theories 4 Stated views of groups . or destruction of human embryos. Please discuss this issue on the talk page.4 Objection  2.4 Individuality  2. Not all stem cell research involves the creation. For example.2 Private Funding Concerns o 2. It may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia's quality standards and make it more accessible to a general audience. treatment.4.1. the free encyclopedia This article is written in the style of a debate rather than an encyclopedic summary.3 Superiority  2. adult stem cells. and destruction of human embryos incident to research involving embryonic stem cells.

2.4 Jewish view 5 See also 6 References 7 External links o [edit]Background Main article: Stem cell Since stem cells have the ability to differentiate into any type of cell.2.3 Asia o 4.1 Baptists  4.1 Europe  4.2 U. In early 2009.2.2.5 The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints o 4.S. the FDA approved the first human clinical trials using embryonic stem cells.[1] Great levels of success and potential have been shown from research using adult stem cells.1 Government policy stances  4.2. degenerative conditions.2 Church views  4.   4.1. Treatments that have been proposed include treatment for physical trauma.1.3 Funding  4. they offer something in the development of medical treatments for a wide range of conditions. Yet further treatments using stem cells could potentially be developed thanks to their ability to repair extensive tissue damage. and genetic diseases (in combination with gene therapy). Embryonic stem cells are totipotent.1.3 Methodism  4. and thus can become any .2.1.4 Pentecostalism  4.3 Islamic view o Origins  4.1.2 United States  4. Congressional response  4.2.2 Catholicism  4.

reported the successful derivation of a stem cell line using a process similar to preimplantation genetic diagnosis. resulting in induced pluripotent stem cells. because researchers have struggled to identify and isolate neural progenitors from adult tissues. "These are the first human embryonic cell lines in existence that didn't result from the destruction of an embryo.[5] Lanza announced that his team had succeeded in producing three new stem cell lines without destroying the parent embryos. led by Kevin Eggan. embryonic stem cells are considered more useful for nervous system therapies. Some believe that human skin cells can be coaxed to "dedifferentiate" and revert to an embryonic state.other cell type.a problem which wouldn't occur if the patient received his or her own stem cells. however. thus creating a new stem cell line. might be rejected by the immune system . however. are generally limited to differentiating into different cell types of their tissue of origin. in which a single blastomere is extracted from a blastocyst.[2] Another study published in August 2006 also indicates that differentiated cells can be reprogrammed to an embryonic-like state by introducing four specific factors.[4] At the 2007 meeting of the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR). have attempted to transfer the nucleus of a somatic cell into an existing embryonic stem cell. Some stem cell researchers are working to develop techniques of isolating stem cells that are as potent as embryonic stem cells. Embryonic stem cells. restrictions on federal funding for ES cell research." Lanza is currently in discussions with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to determine whether the new technique sidesteps U. Adult stem cells.S. However. increasing the number of cell types a given adult stem cell can become.[3] Researchers at Advanced Cell Technology. but do not require a human embryo.[6] . Researchers at Harvard University. In addition. some evidence suggests that adult stem cell plasticity may exist. led by Robert Lanza.

Anthony Atala of Wake Forest University says that the fluid surrounding the fetus has been found to contain stem cells that. most medical researchers anticipate being able to use technologies . combined with the belief that human life begins when a sperm cell fertilizes an egg cell to form a single cell. the creation of a human embryonic stem cell line requires the destruction of a human embryo. blood vessel. In the United States alone. He hopes "that these cells will provide a valuable resource for tissue repair and for engineered organs as well".[8] The fundamental assertion of those who oppose embryonic stem cell research is the belief that human life is inviolable. Medical researchers widely submit that stem cell research has the potential to dramatically alter approaches to understanding and treating diseases. there have been estimates of at least 400. Most of these embryos are to be destroyed.[10] See Also Embryo donation.000 such embryos. to support human embryonic stem cell research. muscle. such as Utah Senator Orrin Hatch. The extraction of this fluid is not thought to harm the fetus in any way. or stored for long periods of time. bone. "can be differentiated towards cell types such as fat. when utilized correctly. A portion of stem cell researchers use embryos that were created but not used in in vitro fertility treatments to derive new stem cell lines. and to alleviate suffering. In the future. whose members are concerned with the rights and status of the embryo as an early-aged human life.[9] This has led some opponents of abortion. Stem cell debates have motivated and reinvigorated the pro-life movement.[7] [edit]Viewpoints The status of the human embryo and human embryonic stem cell research is a controversial issue as. They can believe that embryonic stem cell research instrumentalizes and violates the sanctity of life and some also view it as tantamount tomurder. nerve and liver cells". with the present state of technology. long past their viable storage life.

Fox. Spinal cord injuries and Parkinson's disease are two examples that have been championed by high-profile media personalities (for instance.. National Institutes of Health's Guidelines stated: ".promises new treatments and possible cures for many debilitating diseases and injuries.derived from stem cell research to treat a variety of diseases and impairments. who have lived with these conditions.S. diabetes... the technique may disrupt the DNA in the new stem cells. burns and spinal cord injuries. Another technique announced in 2007 may also defuse the longstanding debate and controversy. However. In August 2000. Massachusetts. including Parkinson's disease. More research will be required before non-cancerous stem cells can be created. it would alleviate some of the ethical concerns related to embryonic stem cell research. resulting in damaged and cancerous tissue. Research teams in the United States and Japan have developed a simple and cost effective method of reprogramming human skin cells to function much like embryonic stem cells by introducing artificial viruses.[12] If this technique and its reliability are improved. The U. heart disease. respectively). the newly discovered method of reprogramming cells is much cheaper. researchers at Advanced Cell Technology of Worcester.. While extracting and cloning stem cells is complex and extremely expensive.[13][14][15][16] . which has been appealed to by proponents of embryonic stem cell research. Christopher Reeve and Michael J. multiple sclerosis.research involving human pluripotent stem cells. The NIH believes the potential medical benefits of human pluripotent stem cell technology are compelling and worthy of pursuit in accordance with appropriate ethical standards. The anticipated medical benefits of stem cell research add urgency to the debates." [11] In 2006. succeeded in obtaining stem cells from mouse embryos without destroying the embryos.

[19] Some parties contend that embryos are not humans.e. making cells of the inner cell mass no more "human" than a skin cell. The interest in these two treatments derives from recent reports indicating that umbilical cord blood stem cells may be beneficial for spinal cord injury and that lithium may promote regeneration and recovery of function after spinal cord injury. Blastocysts are a cluster of human cells that have not differentiated into distinct organ tissue. believing that the life of Homo sapiens only begins when the heartbeat    .[20][21] Thus. and can be presented in several forms:   Embryos are not equivalent to human life while they are still incapable of surviving outside the womb (i. far more embryos are lost due to chance than are proposed to be used for embryonic stem cell research or treatments.[17][18] The planned treatment trials will focus on the effects of oral lithium on neurological function in people with chronic spinal cord injury and those that have received umbilical cord blood mononuclear cell transplants to the spinal cord. Both lithium and umbilical cord blood are widely available therapies that have long been used to treat diseases in humans. This makes embryonic stem cells a prospect for cellular therapies to treat a wide range of diseases. they only have the potential for life). [edit]Endorsement Embryonic stem cells have the potential to grow indefinitely in a laboratory environment and can differentiate into almost all types of bodily tissue. More than a third of zygotes do not implant after conception.Update article to include 2009/2010 current stem cell usages in clinical trials.[19] [edit]Human potential and humanity This argument often goes hand-in-hand with the utilitarian argument.

while adult stem cells exist as minor populations within a mature individual (e. in every 1. embryonic stem cells are likely to be easier to isolate and grow ex vivo than adult stem cells. which is during the 5th week of pregnancy. why not use them for stem cell research or treatments? [edit]Superiority This is usually presented as a counter-argument to using adult stem cells as an alternative that doesn't involve embryonic destruction. 70.[23] [edit]Efficiency  In vitro fertilization (IVF) generates large numbers of unused embryos (e.[19]  Abortions are legal in many countries and jurisdictions.[19] While the destruction of human embryos is required to establish a stem cell line.000 cells of the bone marrow. Thus.g.[22] or when the brain begins developing activity.000 in Australia alone). It would be wasteful not to continue to make use of these cell lines as a resource. potentially making it easier to generate large numbers of cells  . no new embryos have to be destroyed to work with existing stem cell lines. only 1 will be a usable stem cell).   Embryonic stem cells make up a significant proportion of a developing embryo.[19] Many of these thousands of IVF embryos are slated for destruction. which has been detected at 54 days after conception. Using them for scientific research uses a resource that would otherwise be wasted.g. The argument then follows that if these embryos are being destroyed anyway.develops.[19] Embryonic stem cells divide more rapidly than adult stem cells.

[19]    Embryonic stem cells have the potential to cure chronic and degenerative diseases which current medicine has been unable to effectively treat. or a pair of embryos that would have resulted in fraternal twins can fuse together and develop into one person (a tetragametic chimera).[19] Embryonic stem cells have been shown to be effective in treating heart damage in mice. a single fertilized egg can split in two to form identical twins.for therapeutic means.[19] DNA abnormalities found in adult stem cells that are caused by toxins and sunlight may make them poorly suited for treatment. adult stem cell might not divide fast enough to offer immediate treatment. Those who subscribe to this belief then hold that destroying a blastocyst for embryonic stem cells is ethical. In contrast. potentially allowing them to treat a wider range of diseases. not an actual one. [edit]Individuality  Before the primitive streak is formed when the embryo attaches to the uterus at approximately 14 days after fertilization. Allogeneic embryonic stem cell transplantation (i.[19]  Embryonic stem cells have greater plasticity.e.[24] [edit]Viability  . Since a fertilized egg has the potential to be two individuals or half of one. some believe it can only be considered a potential person. from a healthy donor) may be more practical in these cases than gene therapy of a patient's own cell.[19] Adult stem cells from the patient's own body might not be effective in treatment of genetic disorders.

Julian Savulescu [26] lists several arguments. Michele Garfinkel Publicly funded researchers adhere to ethic guidelines. who in the public domain can benefit from these new private findings? Just as insurance is only available to those who pay the premium."[25] The point of viability was 24 to 28 weeks when the case was decided and has since moved to about 22 weeks due to advancement in medical technology. [edit]Moral and Ethical concerns  Many questions arises of this concern. there will be someone out there that will be "playing Gods.Viability is another standard under which embryos and fetuses have been regarded as human lives. self-hood. but with private entities guidelines can become blurry.". Wade concluded that viability determined the permissibility of abortions performed for reasons other than the protection of the woman's health. This fact "precipitates several immediate concerns. [edit]Private Funding Concerns  In the US. It violates a person's right to individuality. Embryos used in medical research for stem cells are well below development that would enable viability. defining viability as the point at which a fetus is "potentially able to live outside the mother's womb." [edit]Objection  . autonomy. In the United States. the 1973Supreme Court case of Roe v.  His journal goes into details of the advantages of using stem cell lines mainly for therapeutic reasons with great emphasis on control. albeit with artificial aid. only private funded companies are allowed to perform research on human embryonic or fetal stem cells. Another concern is since the research is funded privately. The main reason is that if this regeneration practice goes un-check.  It is liable to abuse. It allows eugenic selection.

analogous to the properties of embryonic stem cells. while supporters argue that advances will come with more time and that breakthroughs cannot be predicted. Those critical of embryonic stem cell research point to a current lack of practical treatments. In .[30] Newly created stem cells were developed into an embryo and were integrated into newborn mouse tissues.[edit]"Better alternatives" This argument is used by opponents of embryonic destruction as well as researchers specializing in adult stem cell research. Consequentialism is the ethical theory that assess the rightness or wrongness of a certain action based on the desirability of the results or the consequences of the action. This argument remains hotly debated on both sides.[28] Embryonic stem cells have never produced therapies. adult stem cell research may be able to make greater advances if less money and resources were channeled into embryonic stem cell research. [edit]Ethical Theories This unreferenced section requires citations to ensureverifiability. including a recent study where pluripotent adult stem cells were manufactured from differentiated fibroblast by the addition of specific transcription factors.[27] Furthermore. adult stem cells have been used in treatment)[29] Moreover. (to date. The main ethical theories used by opponents and supporters in this controversy are consequentialism (utilitarianism) and deontological ethics. Pro-life supporters often claim that the use of adult stem cells from sources such as umbilical cord blood has consistently produced more promising results than the use of embryonic stem cells. there have been many advances in adult stem cell research.

These categorical imperatives are principles that serve to guide the conduct of people. Greece. the first successful human in vitro fertilization resulted in the birth of Louise Brown in England.‖ If we give to the human embryo the moral status of a person. Germany. do not allow the production of embryonic stem cell lines. the NIH Human Embryo Research Panel . One of Kant‘s categorical imperatives says. [edit]Stated views of groups Main article: Stem cell laws [edit]Government policy stances [edit]Europe Austria. The word Deon is a Greek word that means duty or obligation. This ethical theory judges the wrongness or rightness of an action based on the conformity of that action with certain norms or principals. a German philosopher expressed his deontological theory using the categorical imperatives. then under this principle it will be wrong to destroy the human embryo to save the lives of others. Unlike consequentialism. Italy and the United Kingdom.[31] [edit]United States Main article: Stem cell laws and policy in the United States [edit]Origins In 1973. deontological ethics primary concern is the action in its self. Five years later. These developments prompted the federal government to create regulations barring the use of federal funds for research that experimented on human embryos. Wade legalized abortion in the United States. Roe v.this theory good actions are actions that brings happiness or pleasure to the largest number of people. Sweden. Immanuel Kant. Ireland. the Netherlands.[31] but the creation of embryonic stem cell lines is permitted in Finland. France. ―always treat persons as ends in themselves and not merely as means to some other end.[32] In 1995.

privately funded research led to the breakthrough discovery of Human Embryonic Stem Cells (hESC). for the first time. would be made available for hESC research. 2001 that federal funds. the Congress intervened and passed theDickey Amendment in 1995 (the final bill. Therefore. be eligible for federal funding.advised the administration of President Bill Clinton to permit federal funding for research on embryos left over from in vitro fertility treatments and also recommended federal funding of research on embryos specifically created for experimentation. In 1998. President Bush announced. Enactment of the new guidelines was delayed by the incoming George W. citing moral and ethical concerns. Though embryo destruction had been inevitable in the process of harvesting hESC in the past (this is no longer the case[34][35][36][37]). . the Clinton Administration had decided that it would be permissible under the Dickey Amendment to fund hESC research as long as such research did not itself directly cause the destruction of an embryo. was signed into law by Bill Clinton) which prohibited any federal funding for the Department of Health and Human Services be used for research that resulted in the destruction of an embryo regardless of the source of that embryo. At this point. In 1999. This prompted the Clinton Administration to re-examine guidelines for federal funding of embryonic research. which included the Dickey Amendment. the Clinton administration. on August 9. In response to the panel's recommendations.[33] but did agree to fund research on left-over embryos created by in vitro fertility treatments. declined to fund research on embryos created solely for research purposes. Bush administration which decided to reconsider the issue. the president's National Bioethics Advisory Commission recommended that hESC harvested from embryos discarded after in vitro fertility treatments. but not from embryos created expressly for experimentation. HHS issued its proposed regulation concerning hESC funding in 2001.

The third bill would encourage research . In May 2005.[41] On July 19. 206 out of 500 members of Congress signed a letter urging President Bush to expand federal funding of embryonic stem cell research beyond what Bush had already supported. Congressional response In April 2004. the Senate passed three different bills concerning stem cell research. grow. which would have made it legal for the Federal government to spend Federal money on embryonic stem cell research that uses embryos left over from in vitro fertilization procedures. announced that he too favored loosening restrictions on federal funding of embryonic stem cell research. and abort fetuses for research purposes.However. Frist(R-TN). 63-37.[40] On July 18. The second bill makes it illegal to create.[38] The Bush Administration's guidelines differ from the Clinton Administration guidelines which did not distinguish between currently existing and not-yet-existing hESC. The Senate passed the first bill (Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act). [edit]U. 2005.S. the Bush Administration chose to limit taxpayer funding to then-existing hESC cell lines. 2006 President Bush vetoed this bill. Both the Bush and Clinton guidelines agree that the federal government should not fund hESC research that directly destroys embryos. 2006.[39] On July 29. Public and private funding of research on adult and cord blood stem cells is unrestricted. Neither Congress nor any administration has ever prohibited private funding of embryonic research. thereby limiting federal funding to research in which "the life-and-death decision has already been made". the House of Representatives voted 238-194 to loosen the limitations on federally funded embryonic stem-cell research — by allowing government-funded research on surplus frozen embryos from in vitro fertilization clinics to be used for stem cell research with the permission of donors — despite Bush's promise to veto the bill if passed. Senate Majority Leader William H.

The bill passed the Senate on April 11 by a vote of 63-34. In 2005 and 2007.e.[44] which would have amended the Public Health Service Act to provide for human embryonic stem cell research. the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2007. the bill was referred to committee."[47] the Congressional provision effectively prevents federal funding being used to create new stem cell lines by many of the known methods.[42] with 10 cosponsors. 2007. The ability to apply for federal funding for stem cell lines created in the private sector is a significant expansion of options over the limits imposed by President Bush. embryonic-like.[32] So. With an income tax credit. while scientists might not be free to create new lines with federal funding. President Bush vetoed the bill on July 19. umbilical cord blood. amniotic fluid. [46] Two days after Obama removed the restriction.[43] Bush vetoed another bill. Paul argued that hESC research is outside of federal jurisdiction either to ban or to subsidize. who restricted funding to the 21 viable stem cell lines that were created before he announced his . the bill favors research upon non embryonic stem cells obtained from placentas. or knowingly subjected to risk of injury or death. stem cells without the destruction of human embryos. President Obama removed the restriction on federal funding for newer stem cell lines.. Congressman Ron Paul introduced the Cures Can Be Found Act.that would isolate pluripotent. i. then passed the House on June 7 by a vote of 247-176. humans after birth. President Obama's policy allows the potential of applying for such funding into research involving the hundreds of existing stem cell lines as well as any further lines created using private funds or state-level funding.[45] On March 9. which still contained the long-standing Dickey-Wickerprovision which bans federal funding of "research in which a human embryo or embryos are destroyed. or unborn human offspring who died of natural causes. discarded. the President then signed the Omnibus Appropriations Act of 2009. 2009.

"[54] [edit]Catholicism In regards. so that shifts in public opinion and government policy would not bring valuable scientific research to a grinding halt.[50] Sigrid FryReverehas argued that private organizations.[51] In 2005 the State of California took out 3 billion dollars in bond loans to fund embryonic stem cell research in that state.[49] [edit]Funding In 2005 the NIH funded $607 million worth of stem cell research. the Catholic Church affirms that "the killing of innocent human creatures.[48] The ethical concerns raised during Clinton's time in office continue to restrict hESC research and dozens of stem cell lines have been excluded from funding. not the federal government. even . it supports adult stem cell research as it does "not require the destruction of embryos. [53] [edit]Church views See also: Christian views on cloning [edit]Baptists The Southern Baptist Convention opposes human embryonic stem cell research on the grounds that "Bible teaches that human beings are made in the image and likeness of God (Gen.[52] [edit]Asia China has one of the most permissive human embryonic stem cell policies in the world. of which $39 million was specifically used for hESC."[54] However. now by judgment of an administrative office rather than Presidential or legislative discretion. human embryo stem cell research is supported by policies that allow the use of human embryos and therapeutic cloning. should provide funding for stem-cell research. 9:6) and protectable human life begins at fertilization. to embryonic stem cell research. 1:27. In the absence of a public controversy. Iran has banned embryonic stem cell lines.decision in 2001.

Islam‘s obligation towards knowledge coupled with its tradition towards not allowing surrogate parenting or embryo adoption."[56] However. Pontifical Academy for Life has stated that human blastocysts are inherently valuable and should not be voluntarily destroyed as they are "from the moment of the union of the gametes" human subjects with well defined identities."[57] [edit]The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ―The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has not taken a position regarding the use of embryonic stem cells for research purposes. commands our reverence. as it "involves no harm to human beings at any state of development. The absence of a position should not be interpreted as support for or opposition to any other statement made by Church members.‖[58] [edit]Islamic view Islam support most forms of stem cell research. leads many Islamic . constitutes an absolutely unacceptable act. whether they are for or against embryonic stem cell research."[55] [edit]Methodism In regards. even at its earliest stages. stating that there are "few moral questions" raised by this issue. according to which.if carried out to help others." The deliberate destruction of a human embryo is incompatible with Roman Catholicdoctrine.[56] [edit]Pentecostalism The Assemblies of God opposes "the practice of cultivating stem cells from the tissue of aborted fetuses" because it "perpetuates the evil ofabortion and should be prohibited. the United Methodist Church stands in "opposition to the creation of embryos for the sake of research" as "a human embryo. it supports adult stem cell research. to embryonic stem cell research. The Church supports research that involves stem cells from adult tissues and the umbilical cord.

then we created of the clot a tissue. under most interpretations of Islamic law. verse 12-14 the Qur‘an teaches: "We created (khalaqna) man of an extraction of clay. only later on in the biological development because of the Qur‘an‘s use of the words ―thereafter We produced him as another creature. Thus. adoption and the adoption of human embryos due to the importance of determining a child‘s true parentage and inheritance rights. a drop in a safe lodging. So blessed be God. the embryo is not considered a person and the use of it for stem cell research does not violate Islamic law." The Shari‘ah makes a distinction between actual life and potential life. under this same line of analysis. the best of creators!" This passage has been interpreted to indicate that a fetus is perceived as a human life. they could not be used by anyone but the couple who created them. then we sent him. thereafter We produced it as another creature.12 This would free up any excess embryos for research purposes since under Islamic law. stem cells from aborted fetuses would also be permitted if the abortion was performed before the fourth month of pregnancy. we believe it is a societal obligation to perform research on these extra embryos instead of discarding .scholars to believe that the Qur‘an can be used to support stem cell research. then We created of the drop a clot. Also. In Chapter 23. The Washington based Islamic Institute stated. determining that actual life should be afforded more protection than potential life. Islamic law prohibits surrogate parenting. then we covered the bones in flesh. ‖Under Islamic principle of the ‗purposes and higher causes of the Shari‘ah (Islamic law). To analyze Islam‘s stance towards stem cell research. once again the status of the embryo must be determined. then We created of the tissue bones.

As stated by Dr.‖ Several Islamic scholars have also pointed out that cloning embryos for therapeutic uses would also be permitted. Not only is it permitted. “ As long as it has not been implanted in the womb and it is still a frozen fertilized egg. as long as such an intervention is undertaken with the purpose of improving human health.them. Thus. scientific knowledge in particular.. in Islam. but research is encouraged. since it is a part of human nature as created by God. Many Islamic scholars also point to the belief that all knowledge emanates from God and that as such. human beings have an obligation to use that knowledge to serve human society. embryonic stem cell research is permitted so long as it has not been implanted in the womb. leads many Islamic scholars to believe that the Qur‘an can be used to support stem cell research. Abdulaziz Sachedina: ‖The will of God‖ in the Koran has often been interpreted as the processes of nature uninterfered with by human action. it is preferable not to destroy the pre-embryo ” . Hence. Islam‘s obligation towards knowledge coupled with its tradition towards not allowing surrogate parenting or embryo adoption. it does not have the status of an embryo at all and there is no prohibition to destroy it.. However in order to remove all doubt [as to the permissibility of destroying it].[59] [edit]Jewish view According to Rabbi Levi Yitschak Halperin of the Institute for Science and Jewish Law in Jerusalem. Islam places an obligation on its followers to seek out knowledge.15 Like Judaism. research on stem cells made possible by biotechnical intervention in the early stages of life is regarded as an act of faith in the ultimate will of God as the Giver of all life. rather than wasting it.

unless it will otherwise not be implanted in the woman who gave the eggs (either because there are many fertilized eggs. 2:6 Similarly. permits research on embryonic stem cells. ..or for any other reason). or because one of the parties refuses to go on with the procedure the husband or wife .. The best and worthiest solution is to use it for life-saving purposes.. etc. Ma'aseh Choshev vol. Certainly it should not be implanted into another woman. 3. —Rabbi Levi Yitschak Halperin. Israel. the sole Jewish majority state. such as for the treatment of people that suffered trauma to their nervous system.

Master your semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Special offer for students: Only $4.99/month.

Master your semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Cancel anytime.