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Biology:

Stem Cells

Volume 1 Issue 1
August 2015

A LL A BOUT S TEM C ELLS


INSIDE THIS
I SS U E
1

All About Stem Cells

Stem Cells: The History


of an Amazing
Revelation within the
Medical Field

Stem Cell Research:


The End of Disease?

The Core Issue: Ethical


Issues Concerning
Stem Cell Research

Guidelines for Stem


Cell Research

Stem cells: What are They are unspecialized cells which can
renew themselves upon cell division.
they?

Stem cells have the potential to


become a different type of cell with a
specialized function or remain the
same. In experiments they can be
induced to develop into a tissue or an
organ. In accordance to becoming
tissues and organs, in some cases stem
cells serve as internal repair in organs
such as the gut or bone marrow.
http://stemcells.nih.gov

Stem cells go through a process called


How do stem cells
differentiation to give rise to
give rise to
specialized cells? specialized cells. Differentiation is

controlled by the interaction of a cell's


genes with the physical and chemical
conditions outside the cell. The cells
genes are encoded on its specific DNA
strand. The code carries instruction on
cell function and cell structure.
http://stemcells.nih.gov

Master Editor: Nancy


Cuevas
Contributing Editors:
Jacklynn Cordero
Isabel Serna
Ahmed Almarar

What are the


potential uses of
stem cells?

Stem cells can form to create new


tissues and organs to donate or
replace existing organs or tissues.
Stem cells can regenerate to repair
damaged tissues and organs to treat
diseases such as macular degeneration,
spinal cord injury, stroke, burns, heart
disease, diabetes, osteoarthritis, and
rheumatoid arthritis. Stem cells can
also be used to test new drugs safely
on differentiated cells.
http://stemcells.nih.gov

Biology: Stem Cells

Page 2

Can Embryonic
Stem Cells
Revolutionize
the Medical
Field?

S TEM C ELLS : T HE H ISTORY OF AN


A MAZING R EVELATION W ITHIN THE
M EDICAL F IELD
Stem cell research began in the late 1870s; it was scientists first attempt to fertilize
an egg outside the body. Nearly a decade later In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF) created the
first animals. However, scientists did not stop there, their next step was to fertilize the
human egg in vitro. Nonetheless the oocyte was successfully matured in vitro by
researchers in 1969. This unbelievable experimentation lead scientists to explore the
idea if taking this operation a step further. The matured oocyte was then introduced to
gonadotrophins, which are hormones that stimulate the ovaries to produce the oocyte.
Once researchers carefully injected the gonadotrophins into the egg it becomes an
expanding blastocyst. In 1978 the first human baby was born through IVF. Stem cells are
inside of the blastocyst, which eventually form into any cell in the human body. Now
scientists are researching how to make human tissue for transplantation by using the
stem cells created in vitro. Edwards, R. (2001). IVF and the history of stem cells. Nature, 413(6854), 349.,
http://biomed.brown.edu/Courses/BI108/BI108_2002_Groups/pancstems/stemcell/stemcell_history.htm

The Controversy in Stem Cell


Research:
If researchers can perfect the stem cell
technology many illnesses and cancers can be
cured. However, stem cell research is
extremely expensive and time consuming,
making it essential for patents. Another
reason there is some controversy is uniformed
individuals assume that all stem cells are
coming from a dead embryo. This is why
changes in the US patent policy are on the
verge. Chan, A. W., Wong, A. Y., & Lee, H. (2014). A patent perspective on US
stem cell research. Nature Biotechnology, 32(7), 633-637. doi:10.1038/nbt.2945

Page 3

Biology: Stem Cells

S TEM C ELL R ESEARCH : T HE E ND


D ISEASE ?

OF

Stem Cell Research is the future of medicine. With innovations made every day in
the field, it is clear to our scientists that stem cell research will bring strides in the
fight to cure diseases like diabetes and muscular degeneration.

Stem Cell Research and


Diabetes:

SCR and Muscular


Degeneration:

Diabetes is not only an epidemic in


America, but worldwide is becoming a
problem. It is estimated that by 2035, 600
million people will be affected by the
disease. Complications with diabetes can
cause a slue of inconveniences and health
risks. These include: loss of limbs, kidney
failure that can lead to daily dialysis needs
and in some cases, loss of vision.

Muscular Degeneration is disease that


primarily affects the vision of older adults.
Muscular degeneration of the eye involves the
abnormality of eye muscle growth of the rods
and cones which are visual receptors. The
current treatment of muscular degeneration
includes medicines and surgeries. However,
doctors believe that the treatments are not
cures, and can be improved upon.

Stem cell research has


revolutionized how modern medicine looks
at and treats diabetes. Stem cells are
regenerative in the sense that they can
regenerate beta cells, which type I
diabetes attacks. Stem cell research is also
being used to early diagnose diabetes and
get it under control faster.

Stem Cell Research is an essential


component to the cure of visual muscular
degeneration. Currently, the existing rods and
cones in the eye are non-changing, with stem cell
technology, aged and abnormally functioning eye
muscles can be replaced. This can make loss of
vision and eyeglasses null and void.

Despite all the advances and strides


made thus far, stem cell research is new
and more research is needed to ensure
safety and effectiveness of stem cell
therapy.

http://www.closerlookatstemcells.org/stem-cells-and-medicine/diabetes
http://www.closerlookatstemcells.org/stem-cells-and-medicine/maculardegeneration

T HPage
E C4O R E I SS U E : E T H I C A L I SS U E S
CONCERNING STEM CELL RESEARCH

G UIELDLINES
F OR S TEM
C ELL
R ESEARCH
Adult Stem Cell

Biology: Stem Cells

Is the modification and


potential destruction of
a human embryo
justifiable?

Ethics are those universally agreeable moral concepts of what is


Scientists argue
generally considered acceptable behavior in society.
that so long as the
Stem cell research is not new in the field of medicine as it has been
research comes up
happening for decades now. The rise of ethical issues now is a result
with many cures for
of a recent development (as recent as 1998) when scientists figured
many patients, it is
out how to extract stem cells from human embryos. The major
justifiable. This
concern for many has been the implication of altering of human
viewpoint has been
Latestand
information
on guidelines
for
embryos
the potential application
of this in
the field of Medicine.
Linked to: A webpagecountered
providing information
with the on
http://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/stemcells/scissues/
stemcell research:
Lo, B., & Parham, L. (2009). Ethical Issues in Stem Cell Research. Endocrine Reviews,
30(3),
204-213.
stem cell research. argument that
doi:10.1210/er.2008-0031
Credit: National Institutes
of Healthare
alternatives

Why
the Barack
attention
now?
President
Obama
issued the
as
O L (iPS)
LO W Uavailable
S O N such
SOC
IAL
Human
Embryonic
Stem
(hES)
cells
and Induced
PluripotentFStem
Executive Order 13505: Removing
Barriers
the use of adult
cells
which can be turned
into any
kind of cell in the human body.
to Responsible
Scientific
Research
Mstem
E D Icells
A instead
Involving Human Stem Cells on March of
of embryonic stem
cells.
2009.
The order gave The National Institutes of
Health the power to support and conduct
scientifically worthy human stem cell
research not limited to human embryonic
stem cells. The order establishes that the
research should be ethically responsible,
and conducted Illistration
with accordance
to the law.
of stem cell therapy

Does the embryo really


get wrecked?

Proponents of stem
cell research infer
www.facebook.com/stemcells
@stemcell
that since the
@stemcellinsta
embryonic cells
artificially grow in
P L E A S E V I S Ilabs
T Oand
U R can
W Eas
B Swell
ITE
develop into
http://stemcells.nih.gov
AT :
humans, then there
www.biologystemcells.com
SO what really is the cause of disagreement? The
is no destruction
pertinent questions are:
that is done at all.
When does life begin? During fertilization, after fertilization
Tell your friends to sign up for our
eventually
lead to
newsletterWill
to it
receive
information
or at birth?

C O N TA C T

Nconsider
F O R MAT
I O Nto be at fertilization.
human
cloning?
on latest
stem
cell news!
Many faiths
the answer

Induced Pluripotent
Stem cells have the
Feel free to email us for more information
The Human Fertilization and Embryology Act of 1990 argues that the
ability to develop
PrivacytoDisclaimer:
embryo
does
indeed
have
rights
albeit
minimal
in
comparison
live
into privacy.
a clone To
ofthe
theextent
NANCY CUEVAS: nancyyycuevas@gmail.com
We respect your personal
humans. This is fiercely contested by several religious groups who
donor.
Many your
permitted
will notrelease
hold
the viewCORDERO:
that life begins
at conception and thus a fetus
is likebya law, wesocieties
JACKLYNN
j.cordero93@gmail.com
name, street address, telephoneare
number or elive human deserving of all human rights including that of informed
against
this
mail address without your consent.and
consent.
http://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/stemcells/scissues/
ISABEL
SERNA: isabelserna947@gmail.com
many countries
Lo, B., & Parham, L. (2009). Ethical Issues in Stem Cell Research. Endocrine Reviews, 30(3), 204-213. doi:10.1210/er.2008-0031
have
Copyright 2015. Team
Allthus
Rightsfar
Reserved but
AHMED ALMARAR: almarara@coyote.csusb.edu
feel free to forward.enacted laws
banning cloning of
humans.
Does the embryo that is being modified have any rights?

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Biology: Stem Cells


Work Division:
Nancy Cuevas: Master editor. Page 1 and 5 (introduction and last page)
Jacklynn Cordero: Page 2
Isabel Serna: Page 3
Ahmed Almarar: Page 4

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