Stem Cell Presentation

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Presented at the University of Pittsburgh Third Annual Sustainability in the New Millennium Conference, April 5, 2003

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Stem Cell Presentation

  1. 1. Stem Cell Research: A Promise For Sustaining Life Author: Justin Redpath
  2. 2. OVERVIEW <ul><li>Sustainability </li></ul><ul><li>Defining Stem Cells </li></ul><ul><li>Classifications of Stem Cells </li></ul><ul><li>Types of Stem Cells </li></ul><ul><li>Ethical Debate </li></ul><ul><li>Political Issues </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusion </li></ul>
  3. 3. Sustainability <ul><li>Quality of Life </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Makes life more enjoyable, less burdensome, or life extending </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Trade-offs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The relinquishment of one benefit or advantage for another regarded as more desirable </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Defining Stem Cells <ul><li>All stem cells are defined by three main characteristics: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Divide and replenish over time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Unspecialized </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Differentiate into specialized cells </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Classifications of Stem Cells <ul><li>Three classifications: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Totipotent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to generate all cells of an embryo and that support its development </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Unipotent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Only differentiable along one lineage </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pluripotent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Transform into any type of cell in the body, except those needed to develop a fetus </li></ul></ul></ul>
  6. 7. Types of Stem Cells <ul><li>Embryonic Stem Cells </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Defined by their origin </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Originate from the blastocyst </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Proliferate by unlimited symmetrical divisions without differentiating </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pluripotent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Clonogenic </li></ul></ul>
  7. 9. Types of Stem Cells (cont.) <ul><li>Adult Stem Cells </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Primary function </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Maintain steady functioning of a cell </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Also known as somatic stem cells </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Share two characteristics of all stem cells </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Long-term self-renewal </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Potential to give rise to mature cell types which have specialized functions </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Contained in many tissues of the body </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Plasticity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hematopoietic Stem Cells </li></ul></ul>
  8. 10. Tissues Containing Adult Stem Cells <ul><li>Bone Marrow </li></ul><ul><li>Peripheral Blood </li></ul><ul><li>Brain </li></ul><ul><li>Spinal Cord </li></ul><ul><li>Dental Pulp </li></ul><ul><li>Blood Vessels </li></ul><ul><li>Pancreas </li></ul><ul><li>Skeletal Muscle </li></ul><ul><li>Epithelia of the Skin and Digestive System </li></ul><ul><li>Cornea </li></ul><ul><li>Retina </li></ul><ul><li>Liver </li></ul>
  9. 11. Ethical Debate <ul><li>When does life begin? </li></ul><ul><li>Different Religious Views </li></ul><ul><li>Source of Embryos </li></ul><ul><li>Human Cloning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Playing the role of God </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Psychological costs the clone will bear </li></ul></ul>
  10. 12. Political Issues <ul><li>Bush’s Stance </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Campaign promise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Middle road </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Limited research </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Government Funding </li></ul><ul><ul><li>$250,000,000 for previously acquired embryos </li></ul></ul>
  11. 13. Conclusion <ul><li>Stem Cell Research </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New frontier of Bioengineering </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Sustainability </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Deals less with quantitative monetary costs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deals more with sociological costs </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Ethical/Moral Issues </li></ul>

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