Stem Cell Research- Defining The Mechanism Of A Stem Cell

Many people hear the term stem cell, but rarely understand what a stem cell is.  Usually jargon used in the stem cell research field is muddled with scientific vocabularly that leaves the average person wondering what the researchers had just said.

This paper, outlining the mechanisms of a stem cell in an unusual work of understandable science.

SA CAI, XIAOBING FU, ZHIYONG SHENG, researchers from the Burns Institute at the Chinese PLA General Hospital explain the mechanisms of stem cell division in the research paper titled, Dedifferentiation: A New Approach in Stem Cell Research.  A portion of the paper is posted as follows:

“Dedifferentiation is an important biological phenomenon whereby cells regress from a specialized function to a simpler state reminiscent of stem cells. Stem cells are self-renewing cells capable of giving rise to differentiated cells when supplied with the appropriate factors. Stem cells that are derived by dedifferentiation of one’s own cells could be a new resource for regenerative medicine, one that poses no risk of genetic incompatibility or immune rejection and provokes fewer ethical debates than the use of stem cells derived from embryonic tissue. Until now, it has not been quite clear why some differentiated cell types can dedifferentiate and proliferate, whereas others cannot. A better understanding of the mechanisms involved in dedifferentiation may enable scientists to control and possibly alter the plasticity of the differentiated state, which may lead to benefits not only in stem cell research but also in regenerative medicine and even tumor biology. If so, dedifferentiation will offer an ethically acceptable alternative route to obtain an abundant source of stem cells. Dedifferentiation is likely to become a new focus of stem cell research. Here we compile recent advances in this emerging but significant research, highlighting its central concepts, research findings, possible signaling pathways, and potential applications.”
Whereby only embryonic stem cells were once thought of as the frontier of stem cell research, adult stem cells hold greater promise in healing and regeneration.


Radiation Causes Stem Cell Dysfunction

Adult Stem cells, the little amazing (re)creation cells, have been shown to become dysfunctional when exposed to radiation.  The reason this research paper is so interesting is because of the amount of radiation we are exposed to every day from airport scanners, to actually flying in the air, to wifi, computers, cell phones, and GPS … Continue reading

Breast Cell Found To Have Stem Cell Like Capabilities Of Producing Cancer

Stem cell – like cells can be turned cancerous in breast tissue.  Researchers from Michigan State University characterized two types of breast epithelial cell types, with one type possessing the ability to become mutinous under certain conditions because these particular cells exhibit stem cell-like characteristics that can turn into breast cancer. The epithelial cells make … Continue reading

Stem Cell Research Finds Hope With Cells from Amniotic Fluid

Amniotic fluid derived stem cells are quickly rising to the top in stem cell research. In a paper termed, “Stem Cell Characteristics of Amniotic Epithelial Cells” Toshio Miki, et al, from the Departments of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, amniotic stem cells are proving to be a good substitute for embryonic stem cells. “Amniotic epithelial cells … Continue reading

Amnionic Fluid-Another Source For Stem Cells

Fetal stem cells have been another source of controversy through the years.  Some people disagree with using a fetus for stem cell research.  Several factors are involved in the controversy.  Aborted fetuses, via abortion, were used at one time for a source of fetal stem cells.  Unplanned miscarriages are another source.  These avenues evokes many … Continue reading

Stem Cell Research Harvests Cells from Baby Teeth

And you thought baby teeth were only good for a quarter (or is it a dollar now?) when you stuck them under your pillow. Stem cells harvested from baby teeth can be stored and used as a health safety net, not only for the child, but maybe even for the whole family.   So don’t forget … Continue reading

Stem Cells Work For Stomach Regeneration

Many middle aged and elderly adults understand the role of the gut in health.  The release of digestive enzymes and hydrochloric acid in the stomach are very important to digestion of foods and affect the vibrancy of life.  The advances in stem cell research show that stem cells can cause midgut or mid – stomach … Continue reading

Culturing Stem Cells – New Advances Found

Few researchers think about the container used to culture and grow stem cells.  What researchers found is that flasks coated in agarose gel produced more stem cells and furthermore, the stem cells remained multipotent!  Agarose gel is an electrical conductor gel made from a seaweed. These researchers from China, Xue-Sheng Zheng, Xiao-Feng Yang, Wei-Guo Liu, Gang … Continue reading

What Are Stem Cells?

Stems cells are very special cells that, when told what to do, can turn into any type of cell  in the body.  The healthy stem cells are signaled to go to a particular area of the body needing regeneration.  The new stem cells replace the damaged or worn out cells and then begin to function … Continue reading

Stem Cell Research Pros and Cons

Like everything in life, stem cell research is not exempt from having both pros and cons. Let’s look at some aspects about stem cell research pros and cons that are of particular interest and usefulness to anyone interested in the subject of stem cells. Stem cell research has been shrouded in controversy as people fight … Continue reading