This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Unlocking The Potential Of Stem Cells

1224 words - 5 pages

In an age of stunning advancements in the fields of science and medicine, perhaps one of the most promising breakthroughs is the discovery and use of stem cells. While the two types of stem cells; adult and embryonic, each hold enormous potential for the advancement of medicine, their origins are frequently surrounded by controversy. Specifically, embryonic stem cells have become the center of a worldwide debate in recent years because the creation and research of these cells causes dissension when not in accordance with certain religious and moral convictions. Funding for research involving stem cells is limited, so it has become increasingly difficult to achieve success with these cells. ...view middle of the document...

Therefore, if an embryo has a pre-existing problem that prevents it from being used in in-vitro fertilization, it should instead be used in stem cell research. Destruction and disposal is inevitable for many unusable embryos, and while their fate ultimately remains the same if they are used for stem cell research, at least they contributed valuable scientific data that will advance medical research. Furthermore, the National Institutes of Health only accept embryo donations “with informed consent of the donors” (What are the potential uses…). This requirement ensures that any autonomy a donor has over their cells is protected, and that their embryonic cells are not given away without their prior consent. Since compensation is not provided for donating cells, one can assume individuals who donate such cells do so of their own free will. Evidently, using these cells for embryonic stem cell research is a better use of spare embryos than simply discarding them.
One of the most distinct differences between embryonic and adult stem cells is that embryonic stem cells are incredibly versatile. Once could argue that scientists might as well utilize adult stem cells in their research to avoid the destruction of embryos. In truth, embryonic stem cells contain several characteristics that allow them to adapt to situations far better than their adult counterparts. Unlike adult stem cells, embryonic stem cells are pluripotent, meaning they have the ability “to give rise to all the cells of the body” (What drives differentiation…). When grown in cell culture, embryonic stem cells can be persuaded to differentiate into virtually any body tissue necessary. This characteristic is unique to embryonic stem cells, thus making them more valuable than adult stem cells. In the correct conditions, embryonic stem cells can form “any type of cell found in the body, such as neurons, blood, muscle, or bone cells” that could then be used in regenerative medicine (Kirchstein). This is possible because embryonic stem cells are obviously not as developed as adult stem cells, and are more versatile when it comes to the types of cell tissues they can form. This impressive range of differentiation means that embryonic stem cells hold the potential to be used in a vast array of treatments. Their lack of maturity also means that they are less likely to be rejected by a patient’s body, making them safer to use. In a recent experiment, scientists “coaxed embryonic stem cells to become retinal pigment epithelium”, the tissue that helps form crucial cells that allow people to see (Looking up). The result was a definite success in that two patients who had these cells implanted had their vision restored partially. Although this was only a small step forward, this experiment provided a glimpse into the...

Find Another Essay On Unlocking the Potential of Stem Cells

Stem Cells are the Future of Healthcare

1305 words - 5 pages are very unique because they have the ability to morph into any of the over 200 cells that make up the human body. For the past 50 years scientists have been trying to understand the true potential of stem cells. Nichols (2001) explained that, it was not until 1998 when scientist James Thomson of the university of Wisconsin isolated living stem cells from embryos using in-vitro fertilization (p.44). That was a major breakthrough in stem cell

Stem Cells in the Treatment of Diabetes

1601 words - 6 pages diabetes are common and can lead to death. Recent reports suggest that one of the most promising potential treatments may come from the use of stem cells, undifferentiated cells that can be coaxed into becoming insulin-producing islet-like cells that reduce diabetes symptoms in mice (2). There is one ethical catch, however: stem cells can be derived from a number of sources, including adult tissues, but the purest source of stem cells with the

Stem Cells: The Future of Medicine

3331 words - 13 pages believe that the current success that stem cell researchers have shown proves that stem cell research deserves support from Americans and funding from our government. In my research paper I will explain the objections that stem cell researchers and supporters face, some real world examples of stem cell success, I will explain what stem cells are and our potential for using stem cells in a way that they can benefit Americans as a whole and I will

Embryonic Stem Cells: The Future of Medicine

2281 words - 9 pages , especially since the science of stem cell research is relatively new. Nevertheless, more advancement has been made in the past twenty years than at any other time in human history. The National Institutes of Health claims that people who suffer from type 1 diabetes have to potential to have their diabetes under control with the use of embryonic stem cells (NIH). The idea is that it may be possible to culture human embryonic stem cells to form an insulin

Stem Cells in The Treatment of Infertility

2359 words - 9 pages ovaries 7 days post hAEC transplantation but was seen in ovarian follicles 14, 21 and 60 days post hAEC transplantation. hAECs which donot have any karyotypic abnormalities or transformation potential in vitro and no tumorigenic potential in vivo (has some advantages over adult bone marrow stem cells. Adult bone marrow cells which are a common source of mesenchymal cells in clinical settings are very limited in the bone marrow. Deriving BM cells is a

Unlocking the Potential of Bcl-2 Antagonists: Key to Targeting Cancer

1122 words - 4 pages -737, although the mimetic lacks effectiveness in cells with an abundance of anti-apoptotic MCL-1, ABT-737 is a strong indicator of how ready or “primed” the cell is for death, which can be important in diagnosing specific types of cancer [Zhang, Ming, and Yu]. Although some components of the regulatory functions of Bcl-2 family proteins remain an enigma, the potential of Bcl-2 antagonists and BH3 mimetics provide hope for future cancer

Stem Cell Research: The Benefits of Stem Cells

900 words - 4 pages improvements in disorders. Treatments for diseases and disorders can’t be developed if experiments aren’t performed. There are a lot of potential uses of stem cells, but there are obstacles that we need to go through first. Stem cells can be used to test new drugs that scientists make. We could generate healthy heart muscle cells with stem cells. Injected cells could repair things in the body by secreting growth factors. Before scientists start stem

History of Stem Cells

1388 words - 6 pages History of Stem Cells Abstract This paper will be discussing the history of stem cells. There are many different ways to collect stem cells. Stem cells can be used for either right or wrong reasons. People can either use them to cure or to cause harm. Most people use stem cells to cure fatal illnesses. The one researcher that put stem cells out in the science world so people could understand it better was Leroy Stevens. His first encounter

The Greatest Medical Breakthrough?the use of Pluripotent Stem Cells

1704 words - 7 pages In Vitro Fertilization (IVF). Despite such controversy, many researchers and medical professionals argue that pluripotent embryos have “the potential to revolutionize the practice of medicine and improve the quality and length of life” for millions of individuals (NIH, 2002, p. 1). For these reasons, the use of pluripotent stem cells potentially represent the greatest medical breakthrough of any era in history and federal funding for such

In Support of Stem Cells

2254 words - 9 pages within these respective diseases. This development could mean potential cures for diseases, such as breast cancer and cardiovascular disease, which are currently ailing many in the world today. For example, stem cells may be able to cure the effects of multiple sclerosis by rebuilding the damaged myelin sheath around the nerves, allowing the body to function correctly once again. This could even prevent the nerves from deteriorating and hopefully

The Pros and Cons of Stem Cells Use

1740 words - 7 pages themselves into different types of cells. The trouble is that this differentiation, with some exceptions, is a one-way process. Stem cells are multi-potential somatic cells from which other specialized cells come up by differentiation. Stem cells are a group of undifferentiated cells that are able to differentiate into specialized cell types. “In many tissues, stem cells serve as a sort of internal repair system, dividing essentially without limit

Similar Essays

Embryonic Stem Cells Have The Potential To Greatly Influence Society

1900 words - 8 pages Embryonic Stem Cells Have the Potential to Greatly Influence Society Spinal cord injuries, multiple sclerosis, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, and hundreds of other rare immune system and genetic disorders can all be cured by the continued use of stem cell research (White). One of the most controversial topics in our community today is the use of embryonic stem cells. This topic relates to

Insulin Producing Cells Derived From Stem Cells: A Potential Treatment For Diabetes

868 words - 4 pages Insulin-producing cells derived from stem cells: A potential treatment for diabetes Insulin was discovered over 75 years ago, however the complications of diabetes still produce devastating results (Bonner-Weir et al., 2006). Such complications are retinopathy, nephropathy and neuropathy which link between high blood glucose levels are now established beyond doubt (Bonner-Weir et al., 2006). Thus, β-cell replacement therapy in the form of

The Ethics Of Stem Cells Essay

1212 words - 5 pages skin to skin contact. He was never able to experience the affection from his parent that other children got to experience. He lived in a world of his own inside his bubble. He later got sick and past on when he was only twelve years old. Embryonic stem cell could have helped save him, they could have created pancreatic cells to help him defend himself against illness like normal humans. Embryonic cells are not looked greatly upon because they

Investigate The Water Potential Of Potato Cells

3564 words - 14 pages Investigate the Water Potential of Potato Cells Introduction In my investigation, I hope to determine the water potential of potato cells. The plant material I will use in my investigation will be potato chips, which I will cut myself prior to the investigation. I hope to find the concentration of a solution where the chip stays the same mass and length, which will tell me that the water potential inside the cells is the same as the