International Stem Cell Corp. (ISCO) Offers the Only Stem Cell That Has It All
Even though the potential of stem cell technology to open a new world of tissue regeneration and disease treatment is compelling, the science has involved a host of challenges in making the dream a reality. Stem cells are immortal cells that can themselves reproduce and also change (differentiate) into more specialized cells such as skin, liver, or blood cells, but the complexity of cell chemistry has revealed unexpected barriers in the application of stem cells. Some types of stem cells are limited in their ability to differentiate into other types of cells. Some types of stem cells are difficult to grow in culture. Some types of stem cells are not applicable to treating genetic disorders. In addition, there is the overarching problem of immune matching, where the patient’s body rejects implanted cells unless they are of a very special type, involving a great deal of work and expense to locate and verify.
One of the most promising sources of hope in addressing not just one but all of these serious issues can be found in the work of a California company, International Stem Cell Corporation, developers of a brand new and very powerful class of stem cells based on what is called parthenogenesis. Parthenogenetic stem cells (hpSCs) are unique in that they are sourced from unfertilized human eggs, avoiding the controversy of using human embryos. The stem cells are created by chemically stimulating the ova to begin division. The ova are not fertilized and no viable embryo is created or destroyed.
Because of the special way in which parthenogenetic stem cells are generated, they have a remarkable and unmatched combination of properties, superior to other types of stem cell for therapeutic application:
• Embryonic Stem Cells – Although having many positive qualities, embryonic stem cells are impractical for wide-spread therapeutic use due to significant problems with immune matching and ethical concerns over the use of human embryos.
• Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPS) – iPS cells also have problems with immune matching, and are deficient for use with genetic diseases since they naturally carry the damaged gene.
• Adult Stem Cells – Besides the immune matching problem, adult stem cells are restricted in their ability to differentiate and to be grown in culture, and are also deficient for use with genetic diseases.
• ISCO Parthenogenetic Stem Cells (hpSC) – hpSC cells from ISCO represent a huge breakthrough to the immune matching problem, providing potential histocompatibility with significant segments of the human population. In addition, they are pluripotent, able to differentiate into many types of cells. They can also be applied to genetic diseases, and are able to be grown in culture.
In short, Parthenogenetic stem cells, developed by ISCO, are the only known class of cells that meet all the criteria that are important when considering therapeutic applications.
For additional information, visit the company’s website at www.InternationalStemCell.com
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