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6 Myths about stem cells

November 12th, 2014

There are numerous myths about stem cells that have cropped up over the years. The following is an outline of six of them:

That stem cells are similar

Most people believe that all stem cells are embryonic. However, this is because the embryonic type of stem cells is the most researched and viable, as they are able to develop more than one type of tissue or mature cells. The reality is that almost all organs in the body have their own special mature stem cells that work to rejuvenate and maintain them.

 

Stem cells are only from embryos

Many people believe that stem cells can only be obtained from embryos, but that is not true. They can be obtained from placentas, umbilical cords, bone marrow, cadavers, the nose, and other areas.

Adult stem cells better than embryonic stem cells

Embryonic stem cells are usually a subject of vigorous research because they are versatile, and can be directed to the needs of specific treatments. Although adult step cells are potent, they sometimes have drawbacks such as triggering adverse immune responses, mutating due to environmental conditions, and more, making the embryonic type better.

The Catholic Church is against stem cell research

The Catholic Church is against the destruction of embryos, but not against stem cell research, as the sources of the cells are adult tissue and cord blood.

Stem cells are the answer to all medical conditions

Stem cell research and use has brought about some promising results, with stem cells being considered in the treatment of conditions such as neurological disorders and heart disease. However, more research is still being done to confirm stem cell viability and use in treatment.

All Cells in the body can become stem cells

There is a great difference between cells with an unfertilised egg in the nuclear and regular body cells such as skin cells. Skin cells, for example, are not potential adults, so can only make more skin cells. It is only embryonic cells that are potential stem cells.