Stem cell therapy is the application of genetically engineered stem cells technology to treat or prevent an illness. The only current treatment using genetically engineered stem cells is embryonic stem cell transplantation. This typically is done as an umbilical cord blood transfer however, stem cells can also be obtained from umbilical cord plasma. Because there are a great deal of concerns over stem cell treatments that are often recommended that you seek out the counsel of your professional genealogist before deciding on undergoing any stem cell treatment. Although some concerns have been expressed over the ethics of embryonic stem cell transplants studies show that these procedures carry very little risk and many children have enjoyed success in treating their genetic disorders using stem cells.
Scientists have discovered that stem cell transplants can be utilized in conjunction with other treatments for certain patients. The success of this procedure depends on the patient’s ability to tolerate the stress of the ongoing treatment. Researchers have succeeded in treating certain patients who received a single transplant. Then, they gave the patient a single dose of chemotherapy. Researchers have discovered that chemotherapy drugs are affected by a person’s tolerance to stress. Researchers are currently testing new anti-cancer drugs for combined use.
Scientists aren’t finished stem cell transplants just yet. They are also looking into other methods to utilize human blood that has been genetically engineered to treat chronic diseases like multiple sclerosis and leukemia. Stem cells are living tissue that has been re-engineered to repair and replace damaged body parts. The donor skin or bone-marrow can be used to provide an increased supply of stem cells to the region that is in the greatest need.
Researchers are also testing alternative treatments that make use of stem cell transplants. One group is evaluating the effect of exposed pregnant mice to high doses of radiation. The radiation was not administered to the mice however, they were exposed to extremely high levels of radiation. The mice survived however only for short durations. Because these cells aren’t well-accepted by the body, it may require several months of therapy before the mice were healed.
Scientists are also studying the effectiveness of immune system boosters that mix stem cell treatments and immune system enhancements. Interferon is among the most well-known immune system boosters. Interferon is a treatment for various forms of cancer, including those of the blood and lymph. Researchers believe that stem cell treatments could have adverse effects that can be reduced by boosting the immune system.
Scientists are also studying the effects of diet on the process of aging. They are looking at diets containing ingredients that promote the creation of healthy cells. These include antioxidants, which are substances that help in the production of healthy cells. These substances repair the damage to tissues after they are produced by the body. Researchers are currently studying lecithin and phytosterols as well as lipoic acid.
Of course, scientists have not yet fully understood the exact effects of stem cell transplants. They are aware that the number of transplants performed is much lower than would be necessary to treat a heart disease. This gives scientists an idea of the total positive effects for the patient in the event that they can create an effective combination of diet, exercise and transplant that will lead to a younger looking and healthier heart. Stem cell transplant remains an effective treatment option because it can provide patients with an opportunity to live their lives again.
Other researchers are investigating methods that are less drastic and employing techniques similar to therapeutic cloning. In this instance, there is no direct human contact between the donor and recipient. Cloning is done using DNA from other individuals and the nucleus of these cells are implanted into the host’s egg. If successful, this technique could allow researchers to produce the cells needed to provide an entirely new source of energy for the immune system.
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