Adult (non-embryonic) stem cells, found in various tissues throughout our bodies, are relatively unspecialized cells that have the potential to develop into other cell types. They have two primary characteristics:
• They are able to self-renew, which means they can go through numerous cycles of cell division while maintaining their undifferentiated state.
• They are able to develop into more than one cell type, forming different kinds of tissues and cells.
Simply put, adult stem cells, when taken as a whole, have the potential to grow into any of the body’s more than 200 cell types.
Adult Stem Cells are Ethical
Because adult stem cells are derived from adult tissues, there are no ethical dilemmas related to this type of therapy. Furthermore, research continues to show adult stem cells have far greater potential than embryonic stem cells to treat a variety of disease and conditions, including cancer, heart disease and neurodegenerative diseases.
It is only through continued research and clinical trials in patients that scientists and doctors will identify the different applications for adult stem cell therapy.
Adult Stem Cell Therapy
One of the oldest forms of adult stem cell treatment are bone marrow transplants, which have been practiced since the late 1960s. In the case of a patient suffering with a blood cancer such as leukemia, a bone marrow transplant (containing
adult stem cells) will replace their unhealthy blood cells with healthy ones. This same concept – inserting healthy cells so they may multiply and form new tissue or repair diseased tissue – can be applied to other forms of stem cell therapy.
The potential for tissue repair with adult stem cells is truly limitless.
In 2013, Kansas legislators signed a visionary bill approving the formation of the Midwest Stem Cell Therapy Center (MSCTC). Housed within KU Medical Center, and led by Buddhadeb Dawn, MD, the MSCTC works exclusively with adult stem cells, serving as a hub for therapy, research, and education.
With donor support, the MSCTC has made significant strides within a short time and is planning its first major clinical trial in collaboration with the KU Cancer Center.
Interested in learning more?
Attend the MSCTC’s conference September 18-19
at the Kansas City Convention Center.
Visit www.kumc.edu/msctc for more information.
To learn about how you can help advance adult stem cell therapy and research, call Pauline Horton at (913) 945-7024 or visit www.kumc.edu/msctc.