Stem cells are something we hear a lot about, but many people don’t fully understand what they are. Today we’re taking a deeper look at Allografts containing stem cells and why they’re being talked about so much recently. Science has come a long way in discovering how the body works and how we can maximize the healing ability. Research continues to teach us more about these cells and how they can be utilized.
Freedom Health Centers stays informed on the latest treatments for our patients. We follow all recent developments to provide you with the best treatment options for you. Our staff believes that our patients deserve the best and we strive for perfection each and every day. As we continue to study regenerative medicine and Allografts containing stem cells, we will provide you with the most up to date information possible.
What are Allografts Containing Stem Cells?
Over 200 types of cells make up the human body. Each of these cell types develop and evolve from the single cell that forms during fertilization. This single cell is referred to as a zygote. After fertilization the zygote divides rapidly until it forms what is called a blastocyst. The blastocyst contains between 150 and 200 cells that would grow to become every cell type in the human body.
To understand more about Allografts containing stem cells, we must first understand basic cell biology. Every cell within the human body has a specific size and structure. For example, skin cells are small and compact while nerve cells are long. Groups of cells with similar function form tissues. Tissues form organs. Every single cell has a specific job and they all must work together to ensure the body functions as it should.
Despite their different sizes and structures human cells have three things in common. They each have a nucleus that contains the DNA for the entire body. DNA decides everything about your body from appearance, to function, to susceptibility to disease. The cells read and follow the DNA instructions. Around the nucleus is the cytoplasm. This part of the cell creates the materials the cell needs to perform its job. Next is the surface of the cell, or the cell membrane. This is a complex structure that communicates with other cells and allows material to pass in and out of the cell.
The majority of cells divide. Before they do so, the DNA within the cell is replicated. The cell then divides into two complete copies of the original cell including the DNA, cytoplasm, and cell membrane.
Types of Stem Cells
Stem cells are the base for every tissue and organ throughout your body. There are actually many types of cells. These cells come from different places in the body and are formed at various times of our lives. Stem cells share the common traits of being able to make copies of themselves and develop into specialized cells. This is where the commonality ends, however. Stem cells vary greatly in their abilities and this is why researchers test all types of cells in their studies.
Embryonic Stem Cells
Embryonic Allografts containing stem cells are among the most controversial. However, this tends to be because many people don’t understand how they’re created or collected. These cells are collected from a blastocyst. This is the hollow ball of cells that forms between three and five days after fertilization. The blastocyst is about the size of the period at the end of this sentence. These are the cells that can develop into all the other cells in the human body. Under special conditions, scientists can extract and grow these cells while retaining the properties of the embryonic Allografts containing stem cells. Their ability to become any cell other than placenta or umbilical cord cells is referred to as being pluripotent. Embryonic Allografts containing stem cells are a valuable resource for studying development as well as disease. The fertilized eggs that provide these cells are typically donated after they are no longer needed for in vitro fertilization.
Tissue Specific Stem Cells
Tissue specific Allografts containing stem cells are often referred to as adult or somatic Allografts containing stem cells. These cells are more specialized in their ability to create different cells for the specific tissue or organ they are associated with. Stem cells that create red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets reside in bone marrow. They are unable to generate cells for other organs. These types of cells are often difficult to locate within the human body. In a laboratory setting they do not self-renew as well as embryonic Allografts containing stem cells. Researchers continue to study these cells to increase their knowledge on the development and aging processes. They’re also used to better understand injury and disease. Specialized cells such as these are considered multipotent. This means they are limited in what kind of cells they can become.
Using Allografts Containing Stem Cells
Allografts containing stem cells hold significant promise when it comes to helping us understand and treat disease and injury. We already see Allografts containing stem cells in action when blood stem cells are used to treat leukemia. We also see stem cell use when tissue grafts help heal bone, skin, and eye injuries and disease. Currently, clinical trials involving Allografts containing stem cells are researching new ways to use Allografts containing stem cells in medicine. However, there’s still a lot to learn.
Currently, the list of diseases and injuries treatable by Allografts containing stem cells is rather small. However, research is extending this list all the time. It’s important to understand your injury or disease to identify treatment options. The treatment must make sense for the disease. For example, you wouldn’t use blood-building cells as a treatment for diabetes. Don’t be afraid to ask your health care provider questions.
At Freedom Health Centers we’re more than happy to discuss your injury or disease with you. We want you to be fully educated when it comes to your health. Science is advancing in leaps and bounds when it comes to understanding regenerative medicine as it relates to development and disease.