How Embryonic Cell Lines Can Be Used to Treat Cancer
Cancer has been one of the most debilitating diseases throughout the past hundred years. While new therapies are constantly appearing on the forefront, cancer is notoriously difficult to eradicate, mainly because it’s hard to detect in time and because there are so many different types of cancer out there. Fortunately, new breakthroughs in stem cell research have seen the advent of embryonic stem cell lines that are capable of effectively treating some forms of cancer without the unwanted side effects linked to the most common available treatments. While there is still a lot of work to do to perfect the treatments and develop additional stem cell lines, researchers are fairly confident that this line of study is one that could one day end cancer once and for all.
The Real Problem with ES Cell Therapies for Cancer
You may have heard numerous times while watching TV or browsing through your timeline on social media that have researchers managed to find a new therapy to partially or completely eliminate a certain form of cancer without the use of mainstream methods such as radiation therapy. While certain embryonic stem cell lines can achieve such effects, the sad reality is that a cell strain that works for one form of cancer won’t necessarily work for another. The issue of using stem cells grown in labs to reprogram malignant cancers and render them benign is therefore much more complicated than most people can imagine.
Can Stem Cells Actually Lead to the Development of Cancer?
Recently programmed cell lines were discovered to actually pose a threat of developing into cells that are prone to cancer growths. However, when looking at the statistical probability of the cells actually developing cancer-causing mutations in their TP53 genes, scientists have found that out of 140 cell lines, only five had the faulty genes. In retrospect 26 other genes were cleared for human trials, and continuing experiments are being conducted on the rest. As the sequencing continues, the Harvard scientists responsible for the sequencing work claim they hold great promise for developing into cancer-free treatment options in the near future.
Why Embryonic Stem Cells Could Be the Key to Curing Cancer
There is a good reason why embryonic stem cells are the ones being used to attempt to find a cure for various types of cancer. The embryonic microenvironment is known for not allowing the development of tumors because of its early developmental signals which act as suppressants against proto-oncogenes.
Effectively Transforming Malignant Tumors with ES Cell Therapy
A study conducted this year at the University of Pécs Medical School, in Hungary, has shown for the first time that the exosomes derived in vitro from embryonic stem cells can play an important role in mimicking the tumor-suppressant activity observed in embryonic environments. This revolutionary find was based on an examination of the exosomes’ ability to reprogram malignant tumor cells, rendering them benign. The embryonic stem cell medium was shown to exhibit factors that can lead to a reduction in tumorigenicity. For the first time it was demonstrated that exosomes obtained from human ES cells were not only able to reduce tumor size in the confines of a xenograft, but were also capable to effectively target individual cancer cells, leading to dose-dependent reductions in cancer growth.