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THE PHARMA REVIEW (SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2012)

Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine

Dr. Gururaj A. Rao

Introduction:
 
Stem cell research over the past decade and the resultant advent of regenerative medicine has the potential to revolutionize medical treatment. At present, stem cells can be categorized as embryonic, fetal, adult and induced pluripotent cells (iPS). Embryonic stem cells are obtained from the 8-cell stage of the embryo. Fetal stem cells can be obtained from aborted foetuses. Adult stem cells are obtained from post-natal tissues such as umbilical cord blood, bone marrow and fat. Recent research has also led to the discovery of tissue-specific stem cells – or more appropriately, tissue-specific progenitor cells in a number of organs including the liver, brain and nose and dental pulp. Induced pluripotent stem cells are derived from adult post-mitotic cells. Of all the sources, adult stem cells (ASC) are the most viable option at present due to their ease of availability, safety, and lack of ethical concerns.

 

 

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