Regenerative medicine is a developing branch of medicine with the potential to heal damaged tissues and organs, offering hope to people who have conditions that are considered beyond repair.
Regenerative medicine isn’t new — the first bone marrow and organ transplants were done decades ago. But advances in developmental and cell biology, immunology, and other fields have refined existing regenerative therapies with the premise to develop novel initiatives for optimal health.
There are a few different approaches with respect to the different treatment objectives:
Rejuvenation is the boosting of body’s natural ability and response to heal itself. Even after a cut, your skin heals within a few days; other organs don’t repair themselves just as easily.
But cells in the body that were once thought to be no longer able to terminally differentiate like highly specialized cells of the heart, lungs and nerves have been shown to possess the ability to self-heal. Self-healing enhancement procedures are being carried out in various global medical centres with promising results.
Regeneration involves delivering target specific types of cells or cell products to diseased tissues or organs, in order to restore tissue and organ function. This could be achieved through stem cell therapy and adding cell products, such as growth factors.
Regenerative medicine holds the promise of definitive, affordable health care solutions that heal the body from within with lasting effects for Good Health.
The Role of Stem Cells
Stem cells have the ability to develop through differentiation into many different but specific cell types like those of skin, brain, lung, etc. Stem cells are the key to regenerative medicine, as they open the door to new clinical applications.
Regenerative medicine centres are studying a variety of stem cell applications, including adult and embryonic stem cells. Also being studied are various types of progenitor cells which are bioengineered, induced pluripotent stem cells. Each type has unique qualities, with some being more versatile than others.
Many of the regenerative therapies under development beginning with the particular patient’s own cells. For example, a patient’s own fat cells may be collected, reprogrammed in a laboratory to give them certain characteristics, and delivered back to the patient to treat his or her disease or as an adjuvant for body rejuvenation.