Cancer: Stem Cells Essay

Submitted By saidajade
Words: 483
Pages: 2

The focus of regenerative medicine and terminal illness research is trying to incorporate the use of cells that have unlimited self-renewal ability in order to rehabilitate organ function. There are currently two separate stem cell lineages that are being used in research, adult stem cells (hASC) and embryonic stem cells (hESC); however, there is more attention being placed on the use of hASCs instead of their embryonic counterpart. This is because there is a separation in the ideals between religious groups and researchers about the ethical values of using cells from a dead fetus in a lab, regardless of the fact they have the potential to save thousands of lives. An embryonic stem cell can be found inside of the serum of the umbilical cord of both delivered infants and aborted fetuses. They possess attributes that separate them from stem cells found inside in an adult, due to the degree of pluripotency they possess. With unlimited self-renewal abilities and non-specific differentiation, an embryonic stem cell has the ability to become virtually any of the 200 known cells types that encompass the three primary layers of the germ layer. The germ layer is divided into three sections, which are the ectoderm, mesoderm, and endoderm. The ectoderm is the region that is later differentiated into cells that form the outer regions of the body such as the organs of the nervous system (spine, peripheral nerves and brain), the top layer of skin (epidermis), as wells as the cells found inside of our hair and nails Whereas the mesoderm and endoderm are areas that deal with cells derived from the bone marrow and later form organs such as the liver, lungs, and the epithelial cells that line the gastric intestinal tract (GI). In-vitro, embryonic cell lines are generated by transferring cells from an embryo and transferring them into a plastic laboratory culture dish with a specific type of culture medium which will allow these…