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ADULT CELLS, STEM CELLS & CANCER

Posted Sep 19 2011 12:00am
Wow, this one was devious!! Some of these articles must be read very carefully as they are misleading and confusing, perhaps even intentionally so.

http://elrodsgodisney.files.wordpress.com/2011/07/confused_mickey_mouse_poster-p228990749419197094vhwx0_328-e1309635341795.jpg?w=197&h=281They start by telling you ‘adult stem cells‘ may fight cancer….

but later in the article refer to them as ‘adult cells…’

and even later as ‘induced pluripotent stem cells.’

But don’t be fooled by this semantic sleight of hand.

Induced pluripotent stem cells are semantically ‘adult cells’ only in the sense that in an adult can be referred to as adult cells.  Perhaps this is the author’s attempt to make them distinct from embryonic cells. In any case, if your friend asks you for an APPLE from the MARKET, it is not acceptable to bring him back a BAG OF FLOUR just because they both can be “found at a MARKET.”

ANd let’s be clear.  Only ADULT STEM CELLS have thousands of studies and trials and thousands of patients treated safely and effectively.  Induced pluripotent stem cells have NONE.  And while Induced pluripotent stem cells ARE a manipulated type of ‘stem cell,’ they have a lot of problems too, as the article owns up to (one of the problems) in the end:

potential side effects need to be considered. iPS cells may develop into other harmful cells in the body.”

              “other harmful cells in the body”  =  tumors, cysts, cancer

THEY HAVE TO SOLVE THE ISSUES OF REJECTION & CANCER BEFORE THEY CAN

(dichotomy? I think so, makes me think of vaccines where you get injected with the disease to build anti-bodies to the disease.)

But the good news is, there are cancer treatments out there with high results and low or virtually no side effects that make chemo and radiation look ineffective and barbaric by comparison!

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ScienceDaily (Sep. 20, 2011) Adult stem cells from mice converted to antigen-specific T cells the immune cells that fight cancer tumor cells show promise in cancer immunotherapy and may lead to a simpler, more efficient way to use the body’s immune system to fight cancer, according to Penn State College of Medicine researchers.

“Cancer immunotherapy is a promising method to treat cancer patients,” said Jianxsun Song, Ph.D., assistant professor, microbiology and immunology. “Tumors grow because patients lack the kind of antigen-specific T cells needed to kill the cancer. An approach called adoptive T cell immunotherapy generates the T cells outside the body, which are then used inside the body to target cancer cells.”

It is complex and expensive to expand T cell lines in the lab, so researchers have been searching for ways to simplify the process. Song and his team found a way to use induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, which are adult cells that are genetically changed to be stem cells.

“Any cell can become a stem cell,” Song explained. “It’s a very good approach to generating the antigen-specific T cells and creates an unlimited source of cells for adoptive immunotherapy.”

By inserting DNA, researchers change the mouse iPS cells into immune cells and inject them into mice with tumors. After 50 days, 100 percent of the mice in the study were still alive, compared to 55 percent of control mice, which received tumor-reactive immune cells isolated from donors.

Researchers reported their results and were featured as the cover story in a recent issue of the journal Cancer Research.

A limitation of this potential therapy is that it currently takes at least six weeks for the iPS cells to develop into T cells in the body. In addition, potential side effects need to be considered. iPS cells may develop into other harmful cells in the body.

Researchers are now studying how to use the process in human cells.

Other researchers on this paper are Fengyang Lei, and Rizwanul Haque, Department of Microbiology and Immunology; Lynn Budgeon and Neil D. Christensen, Ph.D., Department of Pathology, Penn State College of Medicine.

This study was funded through the Pennsylvania Department of Health using Tobacco Settlement Funds, the W.W. Smith Charitable Trust and the Melanoma Research Foundation.

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