Human Embryonic Stem (ES) Cells

In other pages, I describe:

The techniques used in the early steps of each process have been achieved with human cells.

Thirteen years ago a research team led by James Thomson of the University of Wisconsin reported (in the 6 November 1998 issue of Science) that they were able to grow human embryonic stem (ES) cells in culture.

At the time of implantation, the mammalian embryo is a blastocyst. It consists of the
Discussion of extraembryonic membranes

The cells of the inner cell mass are considered pluripotent; that is, each is capable of producing descendants representing all of the hundreds of differentiated cell types in the newborn baby, including

Their process

The results

SCID = severe combined immunodeficiency.
SCID mice lack a functioning immune system (have neither T cells nor B cells) and so cannot reject foreign tissue. (Some rare inherited diseases of humans are also called SCID. They produce a similar phenotype but involve different molecular defects. [Links])

Human embryonic stem cells have the potential to

However, there are problems that remain to be solved before this hope can be realized.

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12 February 2011