Can we make stem cells from fat tissue?

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  • Thread starter ndung200790
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  • #1
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Please teach me this:
I hear that we can make stem cells from fat tissue that is used in medical treatment.Is that correct?
Thank you very much for your kind helping.
 

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  • #2
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Doesn't sound right, stem cells are undifferentiated cells whereas fat cells are differentiated and undifferentiating(?) cells is (as far as I know) not currently possible.
 
  • #3
Ygggdrasil
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Yes, fat cells can be reprogrammed into stem cells. See Sun, N. et al. 2009. Feeder-free derivation of induced pluripotent stem cells from adult human adipose stem cells. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 106: 15720. doi:10.1073/pnas.0908450106 PMCID:PMC2739869

Abstract:
Ectopic expression of transcription factors can reprogram somatic cells to a pluripotent state. However, most of the studies used skin fibroblasts as the starting population for reprogramming, which usually take weeks for expansion from a single biopsy. We show here that induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells can be generated from adult human adipose stem cells (hASCs) freshly isolated from patients. Furthermore, iPS cells can be readily derived from adult hASCs in a feeder-free condition, thereby eliminating potential variability caused by using feeder cells. hASCs can be safely and readily isolated from adult humans in large quantities without extended time for expansion, are easy to maintain in culture, and therefore represent an ideal autologous source of cells for generating individual-specific iPS cells.
Although the reprogrammed stem cells generated by these types of methods do seem like genuine stem cells, there is still some debate among scientists how "stem-like" the cells actually are. While they offer some promise for use in medical applications, much more work needs to be done to characterize their properties and their safety in humans before they are used in medicine.
 
  • #4
Ryan_m_b
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All cells contain the same DNA, the difference is in the complement of genes that are expressed (on) and the complement that are not (off). Inducible pluripotent stem cells, (iPSCs) are a very exciting research topic, the essentially tactic is to take some primary cells from a patient and treat them with factors which reprogram them into stem cells. Ygggdrasil has it spot on though; much more work needs to be done. One of the biggest issues is that genetic modification of cells randomly inserts the desired genes into the genome, this has a tendency to cause the iPSCs to become cancerous. There are methods that try to avoid this but so far there is no good method to produce high quality iPSCs in high numbers. On top of this there is still the problem of controlling cell behaviour in a desirable way for medical treatment.

In spite of this iPSCs are very exciting and will hopefully open up an avenue for a wealth of future treatments.
 
  • #7
Ygggdrasil
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Although The Scientist writes that the adipose derived stem cells are pleuripotent, both papers that it cites claim that these cells are only multipotent. Still, as these cells can be coaxed into a variety of different lineages including adipogenic, osteogenic, chondrogenic, and myogenic lineages (Guilak et al 2006), they are also promising for use in the clinic and would not pose as many safety issues as with iPS cells.
 

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