Regenerative medicine is a branch of translational research in tissue engineering and molecular biology which deals with the “process of replacing, engineering or regenerating human cells, tissues or organs to restore or establish normal function”. This field holds the promise of engineering damaged tissues and organs by stimulating the body’s own repair mechanisms to functionally heal previously irreparable tissues or organs.
Regenerative medicine also includes the possibility of growing tissues and organs in the laboratory and implanting them when the body cannot heal itself. If a regenerated organ’s cells would be derived from the patient’s own tissue or cells, this would potentially solve the problem of the shortage of organs available for donation, and the problem of organ transplant rejection.
Some of the biomedical approaches within the field of regenerative medicine may involve the use of stem cells. Examples include the injection of stem cells or progenitor cells obtained through directed differentiation (cell therapies); the induction of regeneration by biologically active molecules administered alone or as a secretion by infused cells (immunomodulation therapy); and transplantation of in vitro grown organs and tissues (tissue engineering)
What is heart failure? Heart failure occurs when the heart is unable to pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs; in other words, when the heart cannot keep up with its workload. It can happen because the heart cannot fill with enough blood or because it does not have enough force to pump blood […]
Alzheimer ’s disease and other forms of dementia are common afflictions among the elderly. They are known collectively as neurodegenerative diseases because they involve the gradual death of neurons in the brain. Sadly, there still is no effective treatment for Alzheimer’s and related diseases. However, umbilical cord stem cells could soon bring a wave of […]
What is osteoporosis? Osteoporosis occurs when the body loses too much bone or does not produce enough of it. Bones become less dense, which makes them weaker and more likely to break. Osteoporosis is very common after the age of 50: approximately one in two women and one in four men over 50 years old […]
In terms of hair loss, hair is produced in hair follicles, which are located in the outer layer of the skin. These follicles produce new hair cells (called keratinocytes because they produce keratin, the main component of hair) continuously, pushing the old cells out of the skin and forming a string of dead cells: hair. […]
Fetal stem cells are quickly gaining popularity as therapeutic tools to assist with a variety of disorders. Part of their appeal is the fact that they are obtained without causing any harm to the donor, and avoid the ethical conundrums surrounding embryonic stem cells. The umbilical cord, placenta, and amniotic sac and fluid are all […]