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Stem Cell Research Essay

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The existence of stem cells first entered the public domain in 1963 when University of Toronto biophysicists Ernest McCulloch and James Till published their theory and experiment resulting in “Nature” (McCulloch, Till 1963). In the decades after, global initiatives into stem cell research have produced large strides in scientific understanding and use in medical treatments of disease and injuries. However, while many medical researchers believe that stem cell treatments have the potential to change how the human race cares for diseases, there is a loud voice that cries out against a particular practice in stem cell research and treatment. It is this voice that has proven substantial enough to restrict research efforts on a global scale in controversy; specifically human embryonic stem cells.

Stem cells are biological cells found in all multicellular organisms. Through a process known as mitosis, stem cells can divide and differentiate into diverse specialized cell types and then self-renew to produce more stem cells. By definition, the abilities to renew (self-renewal) and to differentiate into specialized cell types (cell potency) are the required properties of stem cells.

Potency is specified into five differentiation potentials, totipotent, pluripotent, mulipotent, oligopotent, and unipotent. Totipotent, or omnipotent stem cells can differentiate into embryonic and extraembryonic cell types and are produced from the fusion of an egg and sperm cell. Pluripotent stem cells are descended from totipotent cells and can differentiate into almost all cells. Multipotent cells can also differentiate into a number of cells, but only those of a related family of cells. Olgopotent stem cells and unipotent are found to have eve...


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...ioethics/Quotes-on-Stem-Cell-Research-from-Political,-Religious-and-Other-Prominent-Figures.aspx
5."Arguments For Stem cell Research". Spinneypress. 2006. Archived from the original on 2008-02-01. http://web.archive.org/web/20080201224807/http://www.spinneypress.com.au/178_book_desc.html. Retrieved 2007-12-26.
6.Kant. Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals. In: Gregor MJ, trans. The Cambridge Edition of the Works of Immanuel Kant,


Practical Philosophy. Cambridge, England: Cambridge UniversityPress; 1996:4:429.
7.Deriving Stem Cells Without Killing Embryo". Medical News Today. 2006. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/healthnews.php?newsid=50329. Retrieved 2007-12-26.
8.Wade, Nicholas (June 6, 2007). "Biologists Make Skin Cells Work Like Stem Cells". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/06/science/06cnd-cell.html?_r=1&oref=slogin. Retrieved 2007-12-26.



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