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Sunday, March 8, 2009

Embryonic Stem Cells

I hit "Publish Post" on my previous post, and then I received an email from Medical News Today regarding embryonic stem cells. I thought it was very interesting, and wanted to share. To start, I have my own views of research of embryonic stem cells, and have ethical concerns. I believe if we can get the same research from other than ESC, that is wonderful.

At the conference, we heard of one doctor share some ground breaking news regarding embryonic stem cell research. He spoke very briefly about how other cells are being used rather than the controversial ESC. Pluripotency is the ability to form any type of tissue. From what I understand, that is the advantage of ESC, because from these cells you can grow any type of tissue, inducing pluripotency.

Just today, a team from the Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences and Tongi University has achieved new insight into how adult cells can be induced to act like embryonic stem cells with the ability to form any type of tissue. Adult stem cells, like I mentioned before, can be found in bone marrow, etc. Adult stem cells are what is used in bone marrow transplants.

Quote from MNT: "The value of finding alternatives to embryonic stem cells would obviously be tremendous, and the ability to induce pluripotency in adult cells, is considered a breakthrough."

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