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GiveLife.ca

    
Benefits for the body
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Carolyn Abraham
Saturday, August 18, 2001

Brain
Researchers are growing dopamine-producing brain cells to see if they can treat or cure Parkinson's patients. They also hope to grow replacement brain tissue for other neurodegenerative diseases such as multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's.

Eyes
Cataract patients can benefit from corneal transplants grown from stem cells.

Heart
Stem cells may be able to regenerate heart muscle to repair the organ after cardiac arrest.

Skin
Doctors already use stem cells to grow skin grafts for patients with burns or wide gashes. Montreal researchers have also found that the skin is a rich source of multipotent stem cells.

Bone
Patients with leukemia, anemia and immunodeficiencies have been treated by replacing their bone marrow.

Pancreas
Patients with Type 1 diabetes have been treated by transplanting insulin-producing islet cells. Now researchers hope to grow islet cells for implantation from stem cells.

Liver
Liver cells are being grown with the prospect of replacing liver tissue damaged by toxins or alcohol.

Kidney
Embryonic stem cells have already grown into kidney cells in the lab, and doctors hope that one day the process will allow them to replace the organ damaged by kidney disease or failure.

Urethra/sphincter
Scientists have grown this bladder-control muscle from stem cells in a rat and next year hope to test it in an elderly patient with urinary incontinence.

Knees
Stem cells from both embryos and adults have grown into connective tissue, raising the prospect that aching joints may some day be replaced with brand new ones.

Source: Carolyn Abraham

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