Regenerative Medicine

Uploaded by techNyouvids on 14.05.2012

Regenerative Medicine.
Regenerative medicine is a therapeutic treatment that replaces or regenerates
diseased or damaged cells, tissues and organs in the human body to restore
normal function.
The treatment can be buy injection of small molecule drugs, biologics, medical
devices, biomaterials and stem cells or alternately involve growing tissues in
the lab and then implanting them into the body.
We asked people:
What excites you? What frightens you? And how will it change the way you live?
were some of their responses:
"Of course this sounds great.
But will regenerative medicine like this really be available in 2020? Or
is it just hype?"
Medical researchers say
that recent advances in stem cell technology and the ability to create
brand new tissues from cells in the lab, have bought us much closer to seeing this
treatment, a reality.
Some treatments are already in clinical trials.
For example, using human embryonic stem cells to repair the effects of macular
degeneration in the eye.
This means
that in the near future stem cells injected into the body could be used as
a treatment for everything from wound healing after accidents, right through to
the specific treatment of childhood diseases such as type-one diabetes or
the repair of cardiovascular system after heart attacks and the repair of
damage brain tissue caused by Parkinson's, stroke and other brain
injuries. Doctors will be able to re-grow brand new organs from stem cells in the
lab, ready for implantation into the patient. This sort of treatment will open
the door for the wide-spread replacement of damaged organs with healthy new ones
without the need for donor's. "But where will these cells come from?"
That will depend on the type of disease or disorder that will need treating.
Certain types of stem cells may be better for particular ailments. There
are three types of stem cells:
Embryonic stem cells from early stage human embryos, adult stem cells derived
from our body cells including the baby's cord blood and pluripotent stem
cells generated in the laboratory from our body cells to behave in a similar way
to human embryonic stem cells.
Current research uses all types of stem cells.
Some people have raise questions regarding the ethical implications involved with
stem cell technology. This is because ethical concerns have been raised over
the use of human embryos for embryonic stem cells in regenerative medicine.
Research using human embryos is undertaken under strict guidelines
established through legislation and approved by University Ethics Committees.
"How will this technology impact on an ageing population?"
Often, technologies don't always turn out as we expect
and there maybe unintended consequences
even from technology with good intentions.
Regenerative medicine may be the first step to us living longer, healthier lives.
But, will this just mean we have an even larger, more dependent, ageing population?
What do you think?