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Biology Report. How Stem cell research can help enhance medical advancements

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How Stem cell research can help enhance medical advancements In this biology essay I will be discussing how significantly stem cell research influences medical advancements; there have many reports which suggest that the manipulation of stem cells can be very beneficial to the future of the medical industry. The latest studies which are being researched by scientists include, stem cells being used to cure Parkinson's disease. It has been suggested that scientists have identified a stage during dopamine neuron differentiation that may be the critical time to collect human embryonic stem cells for transplantation to treat Parkinson's disease1. It would be an extraordinary breakthrough for the medical world if Parkinson's disease was able to be cured, this is because it has a devastating effect that ruins many lives, especially the elderly, however researchers face many problems; firstly, the task of finding a method for the cure and another is to overcome the ethical and economical obstacles concerning the research into the extraction of stem cells. Just How Bad Is Parkinson's disease Parkinson's disease is a very painstaking disease; it is a degenerative disorder of the brain and affects the motor skills of an individual, it is most common in people above the age of 60. ...read more.


New Scientist have publicised a different method that has been researched, according to them iPS cells can help with curing Parkinson's disease having already reduced symptoms of the disease in mice. Researchers led by Rudolf Jaenisch of the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts had announced that they had done so by first creating iPS cell lines from mouse skin cells. The iPS cells were then turned into dopamine-producing neurons and implanted into the brain of the mice in which dopamine-producing neurons had been killed, to result in the Parkinson's disease. After four weeks the mice had showed a vast amount of improvement compared to controls, which were he suffering mice. This demonstrates the iPS cells capacity to heal Parkinson's disease in organisms which take any shape or form. Despite there being a huge difference between treating mice and human patients it is still a major breakthrough in terms of discovering yet another method for curing Parkinson's disease and proves that the key to achieving this is by the manipulation of dopamine cells3. The New Scientist is a reliable source which publishes accurate information for all users who are researching into a spectrum of scientific knowledge. ...read more.


has had a cell extracted from it will be less likely to be able to implant in the womb or will not develop properly, leading to health problems in the developed child. There are concerns with the life of the embryo after it develops into a baby, worries whether it will be healthy or damaged as a result of stem cell extraction. This is undoubtedly the most frightening risk but it is not definite that such an event will occur; these are just fears whilst the benefits of this method are evident, many lives will be saved and the elderly will stop suffering. Despite the visible difference in harm to the embryo there are still criticisms of the new method but it does not destroy embryos and this is very reassuring. 1 Thomas Jefferson University, "Ideal time for stem cell collection defined for Parkinson's disease therapy", Science Daily, November 2008, at http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081119120145.htm 2 Wikipedia, "Parkinson's disease", Wikipedia, at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parkinson's_disease 3 Peter Aldhous, "Grown to order", New Scientist, May 2008 4 Noam N. Levey and Karen Kaplan, "Obama to reverse Bush policy on embryonic stem cell research", LA Times, March 2009, at http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-obama-stem-cells-2009mar07,0,4706070.story ?? ?? ?? ?? Mide Kole-Emmanuel Biology Report 07/03/09 ...read more.

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