Stem Cells

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  • Created by: joshd
  • Created on: 13-03-14 21:27
What can a fertilised egg divide by and what does this produce?
A fertilised egg can divide by mitosis to produce a bundle of cells - the embryo of the new organism.
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What are the cells like in the embryo? What are they called?
The cells in the embryo are all the same (undifferentiated). They are called embryonic stem cells.
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What do stem cells produce when they are able to divide?
They produce either more stem cells or different types of specialised cell (e.g, blood cells).
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What is differentiation?
The process of stem cells becoming specialised. By this process, the embryo starts to develop a recognisably human body with organs and systems.
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Compare the ability to differentiate between animal and plant cells.
In most animal cells, the ability to differentiate is lost at an early stage, but lots of plant cells don't ever lose this ability.
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Where do adult humans only have stem cells?
In certain places like the bone marrow. These stem cells aren't as versatile as the stem cells in embryos - they can only differentiate into certain types of cell.
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What do doctors already use adult stem cells for?
To cure some diseases (e.g, sickle cell anaemia can sometimes be cured with a bone marrow transplant (containing adult stem cells which produce new blood cells.))
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What have scientists experimented with?
Scientists have experimented with extracting stem cells from very early human embryos and growing them. Under certain conditions the stem cells will differentiate into specialised cells.
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What might it be possible to use stem cells for?
To create specialised cells to replace those which have been damaged by disease or injury, (e.g, new cardiac muscle cells to help someone with heart disease). This potential for new cures is the reason for the huge scientific interest in stem cells.
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(Ethical Concern) Why are some people strongly against embryonic stem cell research?
As human embryos shouldn't be used for experiments because each one is a potential human life. They say that scientists should find other sources of stem cells.
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(Ethical Concern) Why are other people FOR embryonic stem cell research?
As people think that the aim of curing patients who are suffering should be more important than the potential life of the embryos.They say that the embryos used are often unwanted ones from fertility clinic..If not used for research= prob. destroyed
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(Ethical Concern) Banning?
In some countries stem cell research is banned. It's allowed in the UK under strict guidelines.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

What are the cells like in the embryo? What are they called?

Back

The cells in the embryo are all the same (undifferentiated). They are called embryonic stem cells.

Card 3

Front

What do stem cells produce when they are able to divide?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What is differentiation?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Compare the ability to differentiate between animal and plant cells.

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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