Almost every time we pick up the paper, there is an article on stem cells. It can be very confusing. Here are some simple definitions that can help.
Stem cells – cells that have the ability to divide for indefinite periods in culture and to give rise to specialized cells.
They are obtained from two major sources:
- Adult stem cells (ASC) – from any human bodily source such as bone marrow, fat, and skin including neonatal sources such as cord blood, placenta by products at birth, and most recently from sperm cells. No death takes place. ASC are usually multipotent stem cells – they can turn into several different kinds of cells but not all cells.Positive results from ASC: MANY
Negative results from ASC: NONE except not enough money and the lack of truth in the media and academia.
- A person’s own ASC cells aren’t rejected.
- ASC cure and treat more than 70 diseases and are involved in almost 1,300 human clinical trials.
- A human life is not destroyed in ASC research.
- New research shows pluripotent characteristics in sperm and amniotic fluid stem cells.
- Embryonic stem cells (ESC) – from human embryos (the first stage of human life) that have been frozen or are from a clone. The stem cells are taken at about 5 to 7 days of age with about 100 cells. The embryo will die.
ESC are pluripotent stem cells and can turn into all kinds of cells.Positive results from ESC: NONE
Negative results from ESC: MANY
- No human clinical trials – only on rodents.
- There would be a rejection problem.
- A human life would be taken to get the ESC.
- ESC are not stable or controllable; at times they are cancerous or have turned into tumors in animals.
- Eggs in the thousands are needed to form clones – young college women are selling their eggs. This could be very harmful.
Chimera – hybrid embryos containing human and animal DNA.
China developed the first rabbit//human embryo.
Benefits of Stem Cells to Human Patients:*
Embryonic Stem Cells – 0
Adult Stem Cells – 73 diseases including:
- 26 – Cancers
- 3 – Immunodeficiencies
- 16 – Auto-Immune Diseases: Diabetes Type I (Juvenile)
- 2 – Cardiovascular 1 – Ocular – Corneal regeneration
- 3 – Neural Degenerative Diseases and Injuries: Parkinson’s Disease; Spinal Cord Injury; Stroke
- 10 – Anemias and Other Blood Conditions including Sickle Cell Anemia
- 4 – Wounds and Injuries including: Skull Bone Repair
- 5 – Other Metabolic Disorders
- 2 – Liver Disease and 1 – Bladder Disease
* Fact Sheet – www.stemcellresearch.org (Updated 4/11/2007) Peer-Reviewed References (not a complete listing, sample references) The Facts – Prentice, D. “Adult Stem Cells” Appendix K in Monitoring Stem Cell Research: A Report of the President’s Council on Bioethics (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 2004), 309-346.
Regenerative Medicine – A field of medicine when a stem cell helps regrow other cells that have been damaged often obtained from the person’s own body.
Clone – a somatic cell such as a skin cell (any cell except the egg or sperm), containing the DNA of a person is inserted into a human egg cell with the nucleus removed. This cell divides and forms a human embryo with the exact DNA of the original somatic cell. When stem cells are removed from the embryo, it dies.
SOME QUESTIONS THAT NEED ANSWERS
- Why does the media practically ignore adult stem cell successes and fraudulently promote embryonic stem cells?
- Why is so much money given to ESC research and not to adult stem cell research? California’s initiative gave ESC research billions.
- Why the emphasis on ESC? Do drug companies pay to test new drugs on embryos? Do researchers know that most if not all new patents aren’t available on Adult Stem Cell (ASC) discoveries but are available on Embryonic Stem Cell (ESC) research? New tests and new patents mean more money.
Personal Testimonies and Quotes:
Dr. Ida Pennella’s testimony:
It was the last Sunday in February 2002 when Dr. Pennella was returning home from a trip. She was feeling ill, weak and tired. By Monday March 4, 2002 she was in the hospital having a bone marrow test. The doctor remarked that she tested positive for leukemia, her blood tests were abnormal and death imminent. Her family was with her when she was told she had three to six months to live and was advised that she get all her affairs in order.
Expressing her sense of humor Dr. Pennella asked, “Is there an expiration date on me?”
However there was a research protocol if she was interested. It is called a bone marrow transplant (BMT) Dr. Pennella decided to have the BMT (autologous). She was given chemotherapy doses administered several times daily. She was hospitalized for six weeks then allowed to return home for two, this went on for several months.
Finally she was ready to have her own stem cells harvested and reintroduced into her body.
She is currently living a full and productive life after having used ADULT STEM CELL therapy.
Dr. James Sherley from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who is challenging his denial of tenure, has heard that his outspoken opposition to embryonic research is a major factor in the case. He said, “Objections to embryonic research are dismissed if a scientist is found to have any religious beliefs.”
ADULT STEM CELL SUCCESSES CONTINUE
Embryo stem cell advocates claim adult stem cell scientists have had 40 years to find a cure for juvenile diabetes. Actually the research is ongoing. Just recently a new treatment for juvenile diabetes using adult pancreatic islet cells from adult cadavers is working. The June 2003 Atlanta Journal Constitution reports, “of the 250 patients who have received the newest version of the transplant, more than 80 percent have been free from insulin shots or insulin pumps for more than a year.”
This is just one of many success stories using adult stem cells that is happening almost monthly. Most are being done in other countries. The American College of Pediatricians recommends that public officials consider supporting adult stem cells exclusively.
“Every dollar spent on the failed and unnecessary process of embryonic stem cell research steals resources away from the established utility and potential of adult stem cell research. This is fiscally irresponsible and medically unconscionable.” Michelle Cretella, MD.
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