Stem cells are the basic building blocks of life. They are found in the body’s organs, tissues, blood and immune system. They have the ability to regenerate into additional stem cells or differentiate into specialized cells, such as nerve or blood cells. This remarkable ability makes them invaluable in medical treatments. When injected into a patient’s body, stem cells can repair or replace the patient’s damaged or diseased cells, improve health and even save life. With nearly a third of the US suffering from chronic pain and over a million patients a year having joint replacements, affordable stem cell therapy brings a welcome and viable alternative to the non-reversible trauma of surgery.
One of the most fundamental and profound characteristics of stem cells is that at their origin they are undifferentiated. They are not specialized to carry out any one specific function, like red blood cells that are designated to carry oxygen throughout the body or heart muscle cells that are designated to contract to pump blood. Stem cells can give rise to specialized cells through a process called differentiation. This way they can become any kind of cell your body needs, including blood cells, nerve cells and muscle cells.
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Cells are the basic building blocks of all living things. The human body is composed of trillions of cells. They provide structure for the body, take in nutrients from food, convert those nutrients into energy and carry out specialized functions. Cells also contain the body’s hereditary material and can make copies of themselves.
According to Wikipedia, Regenerative Medicine “is a branch of translational research in tissue engineering and molecular biology which deals with the process of replacing, engineering or regenerating human cells, tissues or organs to restore or establish normal function.”
Regenerative Medicine can be described as the process of replacing, renewing or engineering human cells, tissues, organs and proteins for the purposes of restoring function and health in the body. One of the key components of regenerative medicine is the use of cell replacement strategies which usually requires stem cells.
Adult stem cells, derived from bone marrow, have been used for decades to treat certain types of T cancer, like leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma. By infusing healthy stem cells into the body, new bone marrow can be stimulated to grow and disease can be repressed.
Umbilical Cord Blood Stem Cells are derived from umbilical cords and the placenta donated by mothers after normal and healthy child births. This cord blood contains hematopoietic (blood) stem cells which can be used to treat leukemia, blood and bone marrow disorders and immune deficiencies. The process of deriving stem cells from umbilical cord tissue is the safest and least-invasive method of extraction available.
The two main types of stem cells are embryonic stem cells and adult stem cells.
Adult Stem Cells or Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) are semi-specialized cells, tissue specific. They typically can only generate different cell types for the specific tissue or organ in which they live. These cells are found in many organs and tissues, including brain, bone marrow, blood vessels, skeletal muscle, skin, teeth, heart, gut, liver and the reproductive organs.
Embryonic Stem Cells are derived from blastocysts created by in vitro fertilization (IVF) for assisted reproduction that were no longer needed. Because these kind of stem cells are undifferentiated and unspecialized, they can give rise to every type of cell in the body. It is not legal in this country to use this type of cell on humans as there is a great health risk associated with the use of this type of cell, including Cancer.
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