Learn about the main advances in the study of stem cells

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At stem cells they can be classified as embryonic or adult and have been widely studied by science.

The use of stem cells taken from patients themselves is growing to treat diseases such as multiple sclerosis, joint damage and urinary incontinence.

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Responsible for the origin of all other cells and tissues in the human body, stem cells are of great importance for the treatment of diseases. Upon receiving stimulus from specific substances, they can originate specialized cells of certain organs and tissues.

Research and techniques in the area are advancing in Brazilian hospitals, as shown by the CNN Vital Signs presented by cardiologist Roberto Kalil (see the full above 🇧🇷

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“The researchers’ creativity is great. If you think about adult multipotent cells, which don’t turn into muscle but do repairs, we can take them from the bone marrow, but we also take them from belly fat”, explains doctor José Eduardo Krieger, professor at the University of São Paulo (USP) and director of the Laboratory of Genetics and Molecular Cardiology at Incor.

Various treatments

One of the main treatments using stem cells is bone marrow transplantation, also known as hematopoietic cell transplantation. In the procedure, stem cells are removed from individuals, which can be found in the bone marrow.

“Today, we managed not only to use the bone marrow, we have ways to mobilize the cell and leave the bone marrow and go to the blood. You collect without the need to puncture the medulla to remove them. You can use umbilical blood because it is very rich in stem cells and use these cells, for example, to make some tissues, such as mesenchymal cells. You can use them to make cartilage cells, chondrocytes, and use this in people who have arthrosis”, explains Nelson Hamerschlak, coordinator of hematology and bone marrow transplantation at Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein, in São Paulo.

In gynecology, it is possible to use stem cells in the treatment of women with urinary incontinence. The disease is characterized by an injury to the urethral sphincter and therapy has the function of restoring the injured tissues.

“When cell therapy is used, biopsiing a woman’s muscle or extracting stem cells from the bone marrow and injecting them into the urethra, we reestablish both the sphincter and the urethral support”, says Rodrigo de Aquino Castro, gynecologist and chief from the Urogynecology and Vaginal Surgery Sector at the Federal University of São Paulo (Unifesp).


Stem cells can be used for a multitude of therapies and treatments. The systems that make up the human organism have about 200 different types of cells and all of them give rise to the different types of human tissues.

Specialists explain how it is possible to test substances for the multiplication of cells present in the heart, for example.

“Perhaps this becomes a treatment for heart attacks, in which I don’t have to inject any cells into that heart, but this substance that I discovered working with stem cells can put this substance in the heart of the person with a heart attack”, says Lygia Veiga Pereira, head of the National Laboratory of Embryonic Stem Cells at USP. “You have a number of applications of these cells for research, for basic research to understand how human beings work”, she adds.

Source: CNN Brasil

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