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The term OCD—obsessive-compulsive disorder—is constantly and casually tossed around but rarely understood. OCD is a psychiatric condition that has stumped doctors for decades, but they may finally have found a way to stop it: stem cells. What are the potential uses of human stem cells and the obstacles that must be overcome before these potential uses will be realized?
Perhaps the most important potential application of human stem cells is the generation of cells and tissues that could be used for cell-based therapies.
For example, it may become possible to generate healthy heart muscle cells in the laboratory and then transplant those cells into patients with chronic heart disease.
Cardiovascular disease (CVD), which includes hypertension, coronary heart disease, stroke, and congestive heart failure, has ranked as the number one cause of death in the United States every year since 1900 except 1918, when the nation struggled with an influenza epidemic. Cardiovascular disease can deprive heart tissue of oxygen, thereby killing cardiac muscle cells (cardiomyocytes).
The use of embryonic and adult-derived stem cells for cardiac repair is an active area of research. A few small studies have also been carried out in humans, usually in patients who are undergoing open-heart surgery.
In people who suffer from type 1 diabetes, the cells of the pancreas that normally produce insulin are destroyed by the patient's own immune system.
To realize the promise of novel cell-based therapies for such pervasive and debilitating diseases, scientists must be able to manipulate stem cells so that they possess the necessary characteristics for successful differentiation, transplantation, and engraftment. Also, to avoid the problem of immune rejection, scientists are experimenting with different research strategies to generate tissues that will not be rejected. To summarize, stem cells offer exciting promise for future therapies, but significant technical hurdles remain that will only be overcome through years of intensive research. Page citation: What are the potential uses of human stem cells and the obstacles that must be overcome before these potential uses will be realized? Researchers are testing stem cells from children to treat health problems they possess because of damage to the body’s nervous system.
Studies have shown that stem cells can divide continually and become other kinds of cells or tissue. Joanne Kurtzberg is chief of the Blood and Marrow Transplantation Center at the Duke University Medical Center. Patients from all over the world travel to North Carolina to take part in Duke University studies. Another study at Duke is accepting young children who have what is called spastic cerebral palsy.
Trained therapists may be able to help reduce a child’s physical or mental limitations.
Some families involved in her earlier research reported progress in their children after they received their own stem cells. He and her mother, Tania, paid to store stem cells from Sasha’s umbilical cord blood when the little girl was born. Researchers at the Medical College of Georgia in the United States are also working to learn if stem cells can help children with cerebral palsy. Obsession involves thoughts, images or impulses that interrupt a person’s day-to-day living.


In a study published by the University of Utah, scientists found mice with mutations to the gene Hoxb8 located in microgilia brain cells were more likely to obsessively remove hair from their body. By introducing new, healthy stem cells to the brain, the mice stopped their scratching and pulling. By repopulating the brain with healthy microglia cells (ones that contain a non-mutated HoxB8 gene), one might assume this could help manage or treat obsessive compulsive disorder.
Studies of human embryonic stem cells will yield information about the complex events that occur during human development.
New medications are tested for safety on differentiated cells generated from human pluripotent cell lines. Today, donated organs and tissues are often used to replace ailing or destroyed tissue, but the need for transplantable tissues and organs far outweighs the available supply. Preliminary research in mice and other animals indicates that bone marrow stromal cells, transplanted into a damaged heart, can have beneficial effects. This loss triggers a cascade of detrimental events, including formation of scar tissue, an overload of blood flow and pressure capacity, the overstretching of viable cardiac cells attempting to sustain cardiac output, leading to heart failure, and eventual death. A number of stem cell types, including embryonic stem (ES) cells, cardiac stem cells that naturally reside within the heart, myoblasts (muscle stem cells), adult bone marrow-derived cells including mesenchymal cells (bone marrow-derived cells that give rise to tissues such as muscle, bone, tendons, ligaments, and adipose tissue), endothelial progenitor cells (cells that give rise to the endothelium, the interior lining of blood vessels), and umbilical cord blood cells, have been investigated as possible sources for regenerating damaged heart tissue.
New studies indicate that it may be possible to direct the differentiation of human embryonic stem cells in cell culture to form insulin-producing cells that eventually could be used in transplantation therapy for persons with diabetes.
The following is a list of steps in successful cell-based treatments that scientists will have to learn to control to bring such treatments to the clinic.
Doctor Kurtzberg and her team have been studying babies suffering from the effects of hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy. Young patients from anywhere in the world may take part if they meet the study’s medical requirements. Doctor Kurtzberg says these measurements will give carefully structured answers as to whether the treatment is helping their conditions. But she says it must be shown scientifically that cord blood stem cells cause improvement, and not other reasons.
These animals also had fewer microgilia, which are immune cells that search for and clean up debris and pathogens in the brain. A primary goal of this work is to identify how undifferentiated stem cells become the differentiated cells that form the tissues and organs. Stem cells, directed to differentiate into specific cell types, offer the possibility of a renewable source of replacement cells and tissues to treat diseases including macular degeneration, spinal cord injury, stroke, burns, heart disease, diabetes, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. Whether these cells can generate heart muscle cells or stimulate the growth of new blood vessels that repopulate the heart tissue, or help via some other mechanism is actively under investigation. Given the aging of the population and the relatively dramatic recent increases in the prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors such as obesity and type 2 diabetes, CVD will be a significant health concern well into the 21st century. Restoring damaged heart muscle tissue, through repair or regeneration, is therefore a potentially new strategy to treat heart failure.
All have been explored in mouse or rat models, and some have been tested in larger animal models, such as pigs. The mechanism for this repair remains controversial, and the stem cells likely regenerate heart tissue through several pathways. The researchers hope to learn if the cells can improve the quality of life for these boys and girls.


The result may help basic abilities like seeing, hearing, and walking in children with nervous system damage. The word hypoxic means reduced oxygen for, in this case, the body’s cells and organs. Placebos are used to make sure the stem cells are not mistakenly believed to be helping when other reasons are responsible. And a doctor planning to correct the little girl’s eye problems delayed the operation. He heads the first-ever clinical trial of umbilical cord stem cells with cerebral palsy patients.
A person suffering from OCD will struggle to get over the mistake, and it’ll weigh on them long after the incident. For example, injected cells may accomplish repair by secreting growth factors, rather than actually incorporating into the heart.
However, the stem cell populations that have been tested in these experiments vary widely, as do the conditions of their purification and application.
She and her team investigated whether cord blood stem cells can help patients — and which patients they help. Some of the most serious medical conditions, such as cancer and birth defects, are due to abnormal cell division and differentiation.
The availability of pluripotent stem cells would allow drug testing in a wider range of cell types. Promising results from animal studies have served as the basis for a small number of exploratory studies in humans (for discussion, see call-out box, "Can Stem Cells Mend a Broken Heart?"). Although much more research is needed to assess the safety and improve the efficacy of this approach, these preliminary clinical experiments show how stem cells may one day be used to repair damaged heart tissue, thereby reducing the burden of cardiovascular disease. A more complete understanding of the genetic and molecular controls of these processes may yield information about how such diseases arise and suggest new strategies for therapy. However, to screen drugs effectively, the conditions must be identical when comparing different drugs.
Other recent studies in cell culture systems indicate that it may be possible to direct the differentiation of embryonic stem cells or adult bone marrow cells into heart muscle cells (Figure 3).
Predictably controlling cell proliferation and differentiation requires additional basic research on the molecular and genetic signals that regulate cell division and specialization. Therefore, scientists must be able to precisely control the differentiation of stem cells into the specific cell type on which drugs will be tested. While recent developments with iPS cells suggest some of the specific factors that may be involved, techniques must be devised to introduce these factors safely into the cells and control the processes that are induced by these factors.
For some cell types and tissues, current knowledge of the signals controlling differentiation falls short of being able to mimic these conditions precisely to generate pure populations of differentiated cells for each drug being tested.



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15.03.2015 admin



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