Stem Cell Research Paper

Topics: Stem cell, Cellular differentiation, Developmental biology Pages: 3 (1052 words) Published: March 10, 2013
1. Stem cells are unspecialized cells that divide within the body and develop into different kinds of cells. These have the potential to become specialized cells in the body with specific functions. Therefore, they are known as unspecialized cells as they differentiate into liver cells, muscle cells, blood cells, etc. Another interesting fact also includes that these cells are also known as 'undifferentiated cells'. This is because they have not completed a specific developmental path to form a specific organ or tissue. The different types are divided or categorized according to their 'potency'. This term 'potency' is used to describe the number of types of cells a cell can develop or differentiate into. Stem cells are of three types: totipotent, pluripotent, and multipotent. The totipotent cells are the first type. These cells are those that have not begun the process of differentiation. These cells have the capability to differentiate into any type of cell within the body. The pluripotent cells are those that are almost as potent as totipotent cells. However, these cells have barely started the differentiation process and are capable of developing into any other type of body cell. Multipotent stem cells are those cells that have begun the process of differentiation into general cell type. They can develop into certain type of cells in a particular group or family of cells. There are different sources within the body that are used in collecting different stem cells. The three types mentioned previously are located in different locations of the body. Their function differs from each other. Totipotent cells can develop into any kind of cells and pluripotent stem cells can develop into any cells other than the cells needed to create a human. The multipotent cells can form fetal tissue, cord blood and adult stem cells. These are those cells that form a group of cells called embryo. They are the first step in development of life. These newly fertilized embryo cells...
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