Journal of Bioengineering and Medical Technology

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An Overview of Stem Cell Therapy and Its Application to Cancer Treatment

Cancer is still a leading cause of death around the world. Despite significant progress in understanding the molecular basis of cancer, as well as advances in cancer detection and treatment, cancer mortality remains high, and despite significant advances in medicines, there is no cure. Regenerative medicines based on stem cells have sparked hopes for new therapeutic techniques. Stem cells are cells that have the ability to self-renew and differentiate into adult cells of a particular tissue. A critical comparison of the characteristics of numerous types of stem cells is presented, with a focus on qualities that are crucial for the therapeutic use of these cells. It is emphasized the relevance of an autologous source of pluripotent stem cells. Cancer Stem Cells (CSCs), like normal tissue stem cells, can self-renew through symmetric or asymmetric cell division and are the only cells capable of reproducing malignant tumors indefinitely. Understanding the physiology and metabolism of CSCs could be critical in the development of new, effective treatments. Because they target all rapidly dividing cells, current chemotherapies have severe adverse effects. Due to the similarities between CSCs and regular tissue stem cells, medications that target exclusively CSCs have less negative effects for patients. The lack of sufficient specificity is thought to be the main impediment to the development of effective cancer therapies. Since the discovery of Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) tumor-oriented homing capabilities, the use of particular anticancer gene-engineered MSCs has held considerable promise for cancer therapy.

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