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  • Can you imagine a world where one day if you need a new heart you could just order one

  • made just for you? Sound like science fiction? Well were not so far off.

  • Hey guys, Julia here for DNews

  • Dudes, so something pretty cool just happened in the wonderful world of science. Researchers

  • grew BEATING HEARTS FROM HUMAN STEM CELLS. Okay fine hyperbole, it’s not the whole

  • heart just a few beating cells. BUT IT’S SO COOL.

  • In a study published in the journal Nature, the researchers used human skin cells, turned

  • them into pluripotent cells and used physical and chemical signals to coax the cells into

  • forming little cardiac microchambers. Which could be important for studying how the heart

  • grows in an embryo or how drugs might affect a fetus’s heart. Orlooking way into

  • the future, for growing hearts in a dish. It could be a great way to replace organs.

  • No more waiting for a donor and since it would be perfect match to your body, no more terrible

  • drugs to prevent rejection. So far smaller organs like tracheas and bladders

  • have been grown in a lab using a person’s own stem cells, but a heart is a little more

  • complicated. So let’s take a little look into how we got here.

  • First off, what are stem cells? Stem cells are pluripotent, meaning they are undifferentiated

  • cells that can develop into any kind of cell. Skin, heart, liver etc. So alright, but what’s

  • the big deal? Why do researchers love to study stem cells? Even from the earliest inklings

  • of stem cells, there have been big dreams. Researchers have hoped that one day they could

  • be able to grow entire new organs from stem cells that would be a perfect match for the

  • recipient.

  • Weve come a long way from the early days of stem cell research. Human stem cells were

  • first isolated in 1998 by two independent research teams led by James A. Thomson of

  • the University of Wisconsin and another by John D. Gearhart of Johns Hopkins University

  • School of Medicine. These early stem cell lines were derived from early embryos, which

  • are destroyed in the process and thus stirred a little controversy. Okay a lot of controversy.

  • Because of the debate that raged in the US surrounding embryonic stem cell research,

  • scientists looked to find stem cells in other adult tissues. So a few years later in 2001

  • adult stem cells were found in fat tissue. Now adult stem cells can be found from almost

  • any tissue. But they are tricky, they take a while to coax into growing in a dish. So

  • theyre not ideal.

  • But in 2007, in a paper published in the journal Nature Biotechnology, Dr. Anthony Alata discovered

  • that amniotic fluid also contains stem cells. Which of course added more fuel to the debate.

  • And the same year, two independent teams of researchers pioneered a process to turn adult

  • somatic cells into pluripotent stem cells, naturally called induced pluripotent stem

  • cells. The process involves introducing 4 different genes into the cells using a virus

  • as a carrier.

  • The team from Japan led Shinya Yamanaka, published their work in the journal Cell and the team

  • from by James Thomson at University of WisconsinMadison published their work in the journal Nature.

  • And it was such a huge deal that, Yamanaka actually won the 2012 Nobel Prize for discovering

  • iPS cells.

  • Which of course this discovery held a lot of promise, it would sidestep some of the

  • controversy with embryonic stem cells. But there are more than a few issues with their

  • technique, like low efficiency, it’s difficult to do and when done, only a few cells are

  • reprogrammed. Plus there’s weird problems with rejection and also a problem with tumors

  • developing.

  • But problems aside, tons of studies have been and are being done with this technology. With

  • lofty goals, like attempting to cure blindness and diabetes. The Federation of American Societies

  • for Experimental Biology says that IPS cells will alsoallow scientists to study complex

  • human diseases in Petri dishes, a step toward analyzing the conditions and developing therapies.”

  • Some researchers like Dr. Alata don’t care where the cells come from, just that they

  • work well. No matter where stem cells come from, it’s clear that were on the road

  • to organs grown in a dish. Well I certainly hope so. But it’s also clear that more research

  • is needed.

  • And really, lab grown organs can’t come soon enough! If you wanna know the challenges

  • of living with an organ transplant & why they fail, check out this recent video

  • I did:

Can you imagine a world where one day if you need a new heart you could just order one

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幹細胞はなぜ重要なのか? (Why Are Stem Cells So Important?)

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    SylviaQQ に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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