In all these years stem cell theory has come a very long way. Now it is a well known fact that stem cells are present in hematopoietic system and this has opened doors for potential practice of isolating different tissues particular to stem cells as well as progenitor cells. In all these years stem cell theory has come a very long way. Now it is a well known fact that stem cells are present in hematopoietic system and this has opened doors for potential practice of isolating different tissues particular to stem cells as well as progenitor cells. Demarcation of properties of these cells and their genetic programs has made them useful for developing regenerative medicine. In fact, the most significant characteristic of stem cells that has made it preferable for Cancer Treatment is self renewal ability of the cells. This is the feature, which helps in drawing a line amid cancer cells and stem cells.
What happens in stem cell treatment?
In Stem Cell Therapy stem cells are transplanted through a procedure, in which cells that are damaged because of cancer are replaced. Stem cell transplant also aid in Cancer Treatment by helping patients in recovering from high dose of chemotherapy and radiation treatment. The cells used for transplant are hematopoietic cells, which originates in bone marrow of a person and the gradually develop into different kinds of blood cells. Stem Cell Therapy comprises of different approaches and techniques based on special needs and condition of the patient.
Varied techniques used in stem cell based therapy
One of the primary techniques of Stem Cell Therapy for Cancer Treatment is autologous cell transplant. In this technique, cells are taken from the patient and are then cultured. These are the injected into the patient’s body after going through chemotherapy or radiation therapy. This method is mostly utilized for treatment of myeloma and lymphoma. Allogeneic transplant is another technique that makes use of cells derived from some donor having the same tissues. Surgeons mostly use this approach for treatment of leukemia, as allogeneic transplants create new response of immune system for fighting cancer. However, in this Stem Cell Therapy there is increased risk of cell rejection by the patient’s immune system.
Present research focuses more Stem Cell Therapy that use cells derived from the umbilical cord. These cells are taken from placenta following the birth of a child and are then preserved in cord banks. These preserved cells can be used even after many years for Cancer Treatment. Stem cell transplants are also useful in speeding up recovery of cancer patients and for treating hereditary blood related problems such as anemia.
Some concerns that blocks the road of stem cell treatment
Apart from the advantages there are a few concerns of Stem Cell Therapy as well. These include the side effects of the treatment. As immune system of a patient is cleared prior to stem cell transplant, it takes time for the immune system to recover fully and begin the production of new cells. During the time needed for the treatment, there is also a risk of infection. Researchers are continuously working to do away with the concerns and make stem cells as safe as possible for Cancer Treatment. A lot has been achieved in the field of late, and very soon stem cells will go a step further to cure diseases that are otherwise difficult or rather impossible to cure. Cancer obviously tops the list of diseases that researchers aims to cure with the help of Stem Cell Therapy.
By: Vaishnav Kumar
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Submitted On Jan 30, 2017. Viewed 282 times.