More exciting news from stem cells research. It makes you hope that you will be around when some of these exciting breakthroughs come to fruition. Pluripotent stem cells are artificially derived from real stem cells and they become much more potent. It’s a word that you will be hearing a lot in the near future.
Scientists have now turned these cells into human gut tissue. They think that this exciting development will allow them to study how the human gut works and how diseases develop more closely than ever before.
According to Medical News Today:
“By coaxing pluripotent stem cells to grow into functioning human intestinal tissue in a lab, scientists believe they have created unprecedented opportunities to study the human gut and its diseases, and taken a significant step towards growing intestinal tissue for transplantation.”
These stem cells can be coaxed in a petri dish to form tissue that is remarkably like human intestinal tissue. This research may lead to new treatments for such diseases as necrotizing enterocolitis, inflammatory bowel disease and short bowel syndromes.
And the great news for all of the anti-abortion activists is that the pluripotent cells were made by using human skin cells, not fetal stem cells. But it’s still too early to see if these types of stem cells have the ability to be turned into any of the 200 types of cells that we humans have in our bodies.
Within 28 days after setting up the experiment, they found a perfect 3D structure that closely resembled fetal intestinal tissue. By studying this material, the researchers and others around the world will be able to see exactly how fetal intestinal tissue develops and how disease starts as well.
Currently the scientists are conducting animal trials to see if this tissue can be useful in diseases that require the transplantation of intestinal tissue, such as short bowel syndrome.
They also plan to study the cells from patients with congenital bowl disease after they have turned them into pluripotent cells. Then they can find out how the congenital disease develops in the fetus. This could even make it possible to intervene in these cases while the fetus is still in the womb. Then the baby would be born without the disease.
So exciting news on several fronts and all because of pluripotent stem cells. It makes one wonder what will be next along this exciting front. We can but wait and see.