On many occasions we have heard about stem cells, but do you know what they are? What are the benefits? What types of cells are there?
We must begin by knowing exactly what a stem cell is, and it is nothing more than a type of cell that has the ability to form an indeterminate number of additional cells for particular purposes depending on the type.
These are found in the human body and undergo a normal maturation process that allows their multiplication, resulting in a significant amount of mature offspring from the original cell.
This “raw material” of the body, in addition to generating new stem cells from their division, creates new ones with specialized functions, such as brain, bone, blood or heart cells.
Cells can be classified according to their origin into:
Adult stem cells
In general, they are located in tissues such as fat or bone marrow. These have a reduced capacity to generate new cells, however recent studies point to the support and development of bone or cardiac cells.
Perinatal stem cells
These can become the most specialized of cells, originating from amniotic fluid or umbilical cord blood.
Embryonic stem cell
They come from embryos that are in the blastocyst stage (day 3 – day 5) of life. These cells are pluripotent, which means that they can be maintained indefinitely both in the embryo and in suitable culture conditions, therefore, they can divide into cells exactly like the original or stably self-renew. They are currently used to repair and / or regenerate weakened tissues or organs.
The Pharmacy Faculty of the Complutense University of Madrid stipulates in a research work that the study and scientific advance may facilitate in the near future the possibility of obtaining in vitro ovules from stem cells, allowing, among other things, that homoparental couples can have children with the genetic material of both parties.