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Stem cell research

Discussion of all aspects of cellular structure, physiology and communication.

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Postby Thenewguy » Thu Jan 06, 2005 7:49 pm

Thanks Biostudent - you rock! :lol:

Is it possible to remove stem cells without harming the fetus?
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Postby thank.darwin » Fri Jan 28, 2005 1:27 am

biostudent84 wrote:I think that it should be left up to the patients. I mean, isn't it wrong to deny a patient any medical procedure? My personal thought is that stem cells should only be used to save lives...not to simply improve the human body. I could accept destroying potentiallife to save a relative's, but I think it would be wrong to do so to regrow nerve tissue so someone could walk. They can live without their legs, right? It's a pro/con type deal.

I am actually writing out a research/argumentative paper. If anyone wants me to post it somewhere when I am through, I would do so.
- that would be nice

I agree with you that it should be up to the patient! One of my famly members has a spinal cord injury and it would be great if he could walk again. The only problem would be to regulate how it is used and that it isn't used for the wrong purposes.
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Postby ajedrez » Fri Jan 28, 2005 5:23 am

Firstly, I would like to debunk some myths that I found posted here: for a first, stem cells DO NOT lessen as a person ages. Let us take the bone marrow for example. It is a major source of stem cells and acts as the produce of white blood cells. As the white blood cells get destroyed, they must be replaced if the immune systme is to be maintained. The body does not simply pull white blood cells out of thin air, it uses oligopotent stem cells located within the bone marrow to act as templates from which the white platelets are created. The same follows for the brain where many stem cells have been found as well. Contrary to popular belief, the loss of cellular mass in the brain is far from irreversible. Once again oligopotent stem cells, stem cells that can produce only one cell in a range of aproximately 6 out of 210 various cells, reform and recreate lost and killed brain cells. Now to awnswer a few questions: A scientist has a time frame of approximately 10 days, starting from day 6 after fertilization, to harvest the ICM, intra cellular mass (stem cells(embryonic)), to obtain pluripotent embryonic stem cells. After this time frame, the scientists can still harvest stem cells but they will be in the form of adult stem cells. If one wishes to obtain EBRYONIC stem cells, the fetus (actually a blastocyst) is always killed. The blastocyst does not render a fetus like shape until day 21. I personally do not understand why people fight over the study of stem cells due to the following reason: fertility clinics collect a supply of unused and unclaimed pre-fertilized embryos which they continually keep until 5 years after their date of creation. At this point, by STATE MANDATE, the zygotic masses must be destryoed. It suprises me that this specific issue does not take precedence over stemcell research. It would seem more logical to spend the yearly disposed amount of 340000 liters of zygotic mass in more fruitful ways. To me, it is all much ado about nothing. If that account may seem as a weak argument as to the justification of stem cell research in general, allow me to say thus: Adult stem cells work in the same manner as embryonic stem cells and can be obtained from foreskin of circumsized babies, which is normally disposed of. These stem cells can be manipulated, through various methods, ranging from denucleation to forcing the cells to form various functions, and in the same manner as embryonic stem cells, be used to create replacemnt organs and skin grafts. 1 sq cm of foreskin can be used to generate 6 football fields of graft skin.
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Everyone has different views but...

Postby BioDork101 » Wed Feb 02, 2005 3:34 am

we all know that everyone has different ethical beliefs about stem cell researching, but we also all know that we have opinions! I was reading the above posts and there was this one comment about how if we used a potential embroyonic cell to save a relative, its okay. But then if we used it to save a person who has lost the function of their legs or to use it to help repair the spinal cord of a stranger, it's wrong. How is it different to save a relative of which the embroyonic cell has come from than it is to save a stranger? Say...If you saw someone drowning and u knew you could save them, would u stand there and let them die? or would u give it a try and save them? If the study of these embroyonic cells can succeed even further, then we have every possibility to cure every human disease out there! These are just my thoughts, if u want to give me your views, please e-mail me because this was my very first post on this site. My e-mail is lilvietlover89@yahoo.com, my names cici so i really wanna hear from everyone else. This is my current topic for an original oratory debate, so please give me an email and help me out here. Your opinion is very appreciated but please no hate mail for what i belive in. Thanks!
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Postby biostudent84 » Thu Feb 03, 2005 4:03 pm

ajedrez wrote:Firstly, I would like to debunk some myths that I found posted here: for a first, stem cells DO NOT lessen as a person ages.


Nice "debunking," Ajedrez. Do you even know what these stem cells are? You do NOT refer to the ESM, or Embryonic Stem Cell. You are talking about the Hematopoietic Stem cells found in bone marrow. I would like you to take note that the only EFFECTIVE therapy these stem cells can be used for is to make new blood cells. Hematopoietic have been attempted to be used in other areas of the body. For example, they have been implanted into damaged heart tissue. However, these hematopoietic cells were ONLY able to create replacement cells having the basic structural form of original heart tissue. Any further similaraties ended here as the replacement cells proved to be NON FUNCTIONAL

Embryonic stem cells are the ONLY type of stem cell that has the ability to effectively replace any damaged tissue in the human body. See my thread called "Kyle's Stem Cell Paper" for further information.

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Postby RobJim » Thu Feb 10, 2005 2:37 am

The problem with embryonic stem cell research is not the research itself, but obtaining the cells. People opposed to this kind of research don't want to encourage abortions by using the aborted embryos as raw material for science.

I myself am not bothered by abortions, so I am fine with the research. However I respect the other perspective. I am unsure about how this issue should be addressed.
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Postby Sciencebeliever » Thu Feb 10, 2005 4:28 am

RobJim wrote:The problem with embryonic stem cell research is not the research itself, but obtaining the cells. People opposed to this kind of research don't want to encourage abortions by using the aborted embryos as raw material for science.


I totally agree... be it as it may im only 16 and am about to finish my first year of biology.. I myself are also catholic.. But i do belive that the church is going to extremes or anyone is when they say that embyos are alive people... Though they may be grwoing doest mean they have all the function as well as any thought process or brain as an embyo anyway... I would also like to add that Embryos should be compared to a plant.. growing but no actual thought process. Plants cant justufy whast right or wrong or... for all we know "feel" either. How can we say that a embryo that does not even have a brain at the stage where scientists are "killing" them, that they have rights as every other human being. When you look at the equation stem cells are much more capable to the already developed and focused adult cells...(for those not as educated in the area... the only reason i am is cause we are currently studying that in my sophmore biology class) Adult stem cells can only be grown into the source they came from... eg. a skin cell grows to more skin. Also adult cells are not everlasting as the stem cells from embryos. They dont always keep reproducing. Whereas Embryonic stem cells are called "immortal" becuase they keep reporucing till stopped by more cells or a cover. e.g. "when lined with collagen ina perti dish these stem cells will grow into skin cells till they reach the outer ends of the stem cells."
Obviously my conclusion is simple.. embryos can be comparative to plants and are essential for the curing ofmany disease with more research
( i hope that i do sound pretty smart for 16... LOL)
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Postby RobJim » Fri Feb 11, 2005 5:23 am

I think you do sound very smart for 16.

The official Catholic stance I believe is that the 'soul' (whatever that is) enters the fertilized egg at the moment of conception. This means that destroying this cell or the fetus that comes from it is murder, according to them.

This is where the anti-abortion and anti-contraception stance comes from, I think.
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Postby Sciencebeliever » Fri Feb 11, 2005 9:35 pm

thx... o i didnt know the "official catholic viewpoint" ... well now that i know i guess i can see where they're coming from i huess but still i dont really think that that is really important in the fact that the US has "Separation of Church and State" so any government sponsored researches.. etc. should not and cannot be influenced by religion soo i do think the efofrt at protesting is not going to do much in this situation.
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Postby thank.darwin » Sun Feb 13, 2005 2:40 am

Thank you Sciencebeliever for making the point about Separation of Church and State... But religions can still get around that - intelligent design is still being taught in schools :?
No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong.
-Albert Einstein
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Stemcell research

Postby jabo » Sat Feb 19, 2005 8:45 pm

When the first quadrapalegic is walking around as a result of stem cell research, then the resistance will go away.
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Postby mith » Sun Feb 20, 2005 1:14 am

Current methods aren't successful but future research may be able to coax adult stem cells into pluripotent cells. In the mean time, I think the most important thing the government can do is to let science, not politics decide.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
~Niebuhr
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