Stem cells are the main cells that provide the formation of tissues and organs in the human body. These cells can renew themselves, reproduce, and produce a new tissue against damage to any tissue or organ, as well as repair damaged cells. Thanks to their divisibility feature, they take part in the formation of cells of their own kind, but they can turn into muscle or blood cells. Stem cells, which have many different types, play an important role in the formation of tissues and organs while a person is still in the mother's womb.
There are three main types of stem cells; embryonic stem cells, adult stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells (IPSC). In addition, stem cells are said to be unipotent, multipotent, pluripotent or totipotene according to their differentiation potential.
Ebryonic stem cells: Provide new cells to the growing or developing embryo. These stem cells are pluripotent cell type in terms of differentiation potential. In other words, they have the ability to transform into all cell types in the body.
Adult stem cells: Provide cell support for the regeneration of cells in damaged areas of the organism. These stem cells are multipotent cell type in terms of differentiation potential. In other words, they have the ability to transform into some types of cells in the body.
Induced pluripotent stem cells (IPSC): They are stem cells made by scientists in a laboratory environment. Just like embryonic stem cells, they are pluripotent and can differentiate into all cell types.
Stem cells, which are the main component in the formation of all structures in the human body and can renew themselves, are used in the treatment of many diseases. Previously, stem cell therapy can only be applied with stem cells taken from the bone marrow, but today this treatment can also be applied from peripheral blood and cord blood. In addition, this treatment can be applied by taking stem cells from eggs and adipose tissue, which have been developed and applicable in recent years.
Today, stem cells are used by taking peripheral blood, bone marrow and cord. The stem cell taken from the person is transferred to the damaged area in himself. Another method is to transplant the stem cell taken from another person (donor) to the sick person. If stem cells cannot be obtained from the patient and a fully compatible donor cannot be found, a semi-matched donor is preferred. After the appropriate stem cell is found, this process is completed by injecting the stem cell directly into the patient's vascular access or into the damaged area.
There are new developments in stem cell therapy every day. With these developments, stem cell therapy is applied in the healing process of many diseases. Types of diseases in which stem cell therapy is mainly used: Bone marrow cancers, Lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma, Leukemia, Anemia, Mediterranean anemia, Organ cancers, Plasma cell diseases, Bone marrow failure, Multiple myeloma, Hereditary and congenital blood diseases, Diseases due to immune deficiency , Hereditary metabolic diseases.
Every person between the ages of 18 and 50 who has no health problems in stem cell therapy has the right to donate stem cells. The donor must not have been diagnosed with Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and Syphilis before. People with chronic diseases cannot donate stem cells.
Donating stem cells starts with giving a tube of blood in the first place. The donor's blood passes certain confirmation tests and if the test result shows that the donor is suitable, the donor gives another tube of blood. Donors can donate stem cells in two ways: In the first method, stem cells are taken from the bone marrow, while in the second method, stem cells are collected from the blood. Stem cell collection from bone marrow is performed under operating room conditions with general anesthesia. This method is not used much. In the other process, cells called peripheral stem cells are collected from the circulating blood. Before this procedure, a special regimen is applied to the patient, and chemotherapy is also given. While the patient is in this process, the donor is hospitalized and special vaccines are administered for four days to mix the stem cells that have settled in the bone marrow into the blood. On the fifth day, the donor is connected to a special device that collects stem cells. This process takes place in 2-3 hours, and then the collected stem cells are transferred to the patient.
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