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Stem Cell Breakthrough And What It Means

Stem cell research holds great promise. That’s why recent news from Stanford University has me so excited. And when you hear what they’ve accomplished, I think you’ll be excited, too.

You see, a research team at Stanford has developed a new, reliable source for stem cells. And their study may be the giant leap forward doctors have been hoping for. Even better, this study may have a real impact on your future health.

Duct Tape for Your Body

You probably know that stem cells can grow into many different types of cell… such as skin, bone, muscle and even nerve cells. They’re sort of like duct tape. You can use them to fix things almost anywhere.

Imagine being able to repair a damaged heart. Or even replace lost brain cells. The possibilities for improving – and recovering – health are almost staggering.

But because of the limited supply of stem cells – and the controversy surrounding their use – the pace of research has been fairly slow. 

But the Stanford team’s breakthrough changes the equation. These researchers have proven a new, reliable source of stem cells. The new source does away with the moral implications of using fetal stem cell lines.

At last, stem cell research can come out of the shadows. That means more stem cell lines. More research. And it may mean a healthier future for you, too.

Tapping “an Abundant Natural Resource”

Back in 2002, researchers at UCLA confirmed that human fat contains stem cells.1 And while there have been some studies in this area, most research has focused on growing stem cells from skin.

But there are problems with this process. First, it’s slow. It takes about 28 – 32 days to grow useable amounts of stem cells from skin. And there’s also the issue of “feeder cells.”

Feeder cells are the matrix that stem cells normally grow on in the lab. And these feeder cells are usually obtained from mice. So there’s a real possibility of what’s called “cross-species contamination.”

The researchers at Stanford managed to address all these concerns about stem cells. And they did it with, as one team member put it, “an abundant natural resource and a renewable one.”

They used fat from liposuction.

No, it’s not “gross.” It’s exciting. And here’s why:

Will You Create Your Own “Replacement Parts” Some Day?

We live in an amazing age. Doctors can take tissue from one person and use it to replace lost or damaged tissues in another. But when they do, the recipient’s immune system reacts as if the new tissue was an invading germ. This process is called rejection.

To prevent rejection, doctors typically use drugs to suppress the patient’s immune system. This, of course, takes away much of their body’s natural protection.

But if we can safely grow “repair” tissue from your own stem cells, the odds of rejection are very slim. Suddenly, your chances for a longer, fuller life get a whole lot better.

You don’t have to worry if you’re thin, either. Almost everyone – even folks in great shape – have enough fat for the process.

And thanks to the team at Stanford, we may have just moved a lot closer to that possibility. Their research pushed us forward in several ways.

The Problems Fell Like Dominoes

The Stanford team’s research addressed so many issues, it was almost like a row of dominoes tumbling over. Here’s a quick review:

  • Immunity – Chances are small your body will reject its own cells.
  • Source – Everyone has fat in their body. And most people have enough to be useful for this process.
  • Feeder cells – The team successfully cultured stem cells without feeder cells. So there’s no danger of contamination.
  • Speed – Their process cut the time to grow usable numbers of stem cells from four weeks to just 16 days.
  • Quantity – This new process yields about 20 times more usable stem cells than the skin technique.

Of course, there’s still a lot of work to be done. But in terms of your future health, this is huge news. We may not have custom “replacement parts” quite yet, but it looks like we may be getting there.
 

Best Life Herbals Wellness Team
Best Life Herbals

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1 Zuk PA, et al. Human Adipose Tissue Is a Source of Multipotent Stem Cells. Molecular Biology of the Cell, Vol. 13, 4279-4295, December 2002
Sun N, et al. Feeder-free derivation of induced pluripotent stem cells from adult human adipose stem cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009 Sep 15;106(37):15720-5. Epub 2009 Sep 8..

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