Can stem cells cure diseases and save lives?
In 1908 a Russian scientist discovered stem cells, which can be called the original cell of all cells. For decades, only a small number of experts were concerned with stem cells until, as a result of modern technology and remarkable advances in science, they became the focus of public attention. The experts promise a lot in the field of medicine.
With the stem cells it is already possible to treat some diseases better today. Since 1970, patients with leukemia and heart attacks have been successfully helped. In the event of a heart attack, the baby’s own stem cells are taken from its own pelvic bone and injected into the coronary arteries through a catheter. The stem cells form new cells in the patient’s body, which improves the chances of survival. In leukemia, matching donors must be found to cure the disease.
Stem cell research – The science of the future
Research with stem cells is far from being exhausted, and scientists envision the creation of new organs. For example, the heart, lungs or liver could be easily produced in the lab. People who have a problem with an internal organ, for them a new organ is produced and implanted in the laboratory. On this way the life of many humans could be substantially extended. Another possibility to do something against possible diseases is the collection of umbilical cord blood.
Immediately after birth, stem cells are taken from the umbilical cord of the newborn child and stored in a blood bank. If diseases occur later in life where stem cells are needed, they can be taken from the blood bank. Parents also have the option of allowing these cells to be used for other people or for scientific research to be done with them.