Biosingularity

‘Stressed’ Stem Cell Breakthrough

Posted on: January 29, 2014

Researchers have transformed specialized cells into an embryonic-like state simply by stressing them out a bit—an unexpected finding that may offer an easier route for treating diseases with patient-specific stem cells.

Stem cells that can become all other tissue types are typically obtained in two ways. One requires the destruction of an embryonic clone of a patient, which is ethically controversial. The other, which uses genes to reprogram a patient\’s mature cells into an embryonic-like state, carries the risk of cancer.

Now, in a series of pathbreaking experiments done over five years, scientists have shown that merely exposing blood cells from newborn mice to a low-acid environment—the source of stress—changes them to an embryonic-like state. The key advantage is that no potentially risky genetic manipulation was needed.

via ‘Stressed’ Stem Cell Breakthrough – WSJ.com.

1 Response to "‘Stressed’ Stem Cell Breakthrough"

These experiments are very interesting and a giant innovation in biomedical research. Now that “the source of stress” in cells has been reached and well documented, new doors are beginning to open without any potential risky regarding genetic manipulation. Transform specialized cells into an embryonic-like state simply by stressing them out a bit, can be one of the most impressive scientific innovations of the decade.

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