Stem cell treatment is the use of genetically engineered stem cells to cure or treat an disease or disorder. Currently, embryonic stem cell transplantation is the only treatment for genetically engineered stem cells. This typically occurs as an umbilical cord-blood transplant however, the stem cells can also be derived from umbilical cord plasma. There are a variety of concerns regarding stem cell therapies. It is recommended to consult with a professional genealogist prior to considering any kind of stem-cell therapy. While there is some concerns regarding embryonic stem cell transplants’ ethics, research shows that they are extremely secure and many children have had success with stem cell treatments for their genetic disorders.
Scientists have discovered that some patients can be treated using stem cells and chemotherapy simultaneously. The patient’s capability and willingness to endure the strain of continuous treatment is crucial to the success of this procedure. In some cases researchers have had success with a single transplant and then treating the patient with a single dose of chemotherapy. With advancements in medical research researchers have discovered that a person’s tolerance to stress can affect the efficacy of the chemotherapy drugs they take. Because of this, researchers are currently testing more cancer-fighting medications for combination use.
Scientists are not finished with stem cell transplants yet. They are also looking into ways to utilize genetically engineered blood to treat chronic diseases like leukemia and multiple sclerosis. Stem cells are living tissue that has been re-engineered to repair and replace damaged areas of the body. Using the donor skin or bone marrow as a source can provide a more robust supply of stem cells to the region of the body that needs it.
Researchers are also testing other treatments that rely on stem cell transplants. One group is studying the effects of radiation doses that are high on pregnant mice. The mice were not exposed to radiation at all, but were put under very high levels of radiation. The mice survived however only for short durations. The mice may require several months of treatment to recover as these special cells are not well-absorbed by the body.
Scientists are also investigating the efficacy of boosting the immune system by stem cell therapies. One of the most popular forms of immune system boosters is a substance called interferon. Interferon is a drug that can be used to treat a variety of kinds of cancers, including lymphoma and blood cancers. Researchers believe that stem cell treatments might have side effects that can be mitigated by increasing the immune system.
Scientists are also investigating the effect of diet in slowing down the aging process. They are looking at diets that have ingredients that encourage the production of healthy cells. They include antioxidants. These substances repair damage to the tissues when they are produced by the body. Some of the components that are being studied by researchers include phytosterols, lecithin, and lipoic acid.
Of course, scientists have not yet fully understood the precise effects of stem cell transplants. They understand that the number of transplants that are performed is less than what is needed for treating a serious heart disease. Scientists can get an idea of the overall benefits to the patient in the event that they can create a combination of diet, exercise, and transplant that can create a younger, healthier heart. Stem cell transplants are a very strong treatment option, as it can give patients the chance to live their lives with a fresh perspective.
Other researchers are researching methods that aren’t as drastic using techniques that are similar to therapeutic cloning. In this case, there is no direct human interaction between the donor and recipient. Cloning is done by using DNA from other people, and the nucleus from these cells are implanted into the host’s egg. If successful, this procedure could allow researchers to generate the cells needed to provide a new source of fuel for the immune system.
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