It’s an amazing time for scientific and medical progress. Every day, human knowledge leaps forwards in a multitude of spheres. One of the hottest areas of development right now is the field of stem-cell research. Here are just some of the latest advances in stem cell science.
Rebuilding elderly muscles: as we age, our muscles become weaker and struggle to rebuild after damage or injury. New stem cell treatments promise to help address this, giving older patients new strength and well-being. Patients with muscular dystrophy may also benefit.
Spinal cord neural stem cells: researchers have managed to produce spinal cord neural stem cells (NSCs) from pluripotent stem cells. This opens up exciting new possibilities for restoring damage to the spinal cord from injury or illnesses. Although this research is still in its infancy, the potential for new treatments is thrilling.
Regrowing dental tissue: In trials, stem cells were extracted from children’s deciduous or “baby” teeth. These cells have been proven able to restore dental tissue, healing broken teeth and cavities, and potentially regrowing whole teeth in the future.
Retinal cell implants: New retinal tissue grown from human stem cells has been successfully used in transplants for patients with macular degeneration. In the future, this kind of procedure could offer hope to patients with many different kinds of vision loss.
Stem cell vaccines: Trials in primates have demonstrated that it may be possible to use stem cells to create vaccines against certain types of cancer. The cells can be made similar enough to cancer cells that the body learns to target them, attacking real tumors and potentially saving lives.