Worksheet: The Therapeutic Value of Stem Cells

Student name:

Objective: To understand the therapeutic value of stem cells

About tissue stem cells
Stem cells are one of the most amazing types of cells because they can make both (1) ____________________ and (2)________________________________________.

1. We need stem cells in our bodies. What would happen to you if you did not have stem cells?

(Your response should be a paragraph—3-4 sentences—in length.)

Tissue stem cells have the potential to make several types of specialized cells, but not all specialized cells. For example, blood stem cells can make all the different types of cells in your blood, but they cannot make skin cells.

Question 1 used with permission of EuroStemCell. (Creative Commons license)
2. Describe the systematic process a multipotent or somatic stem cell would go through in giving rise to multiple components of the nervous system. Use correct cell names and terms in your description. Refer to the diagram in your reading “Stem Cell Facts” from the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) (under Tissue-specific stem cells, page 2).

Therapeutic value of stem cells

Read the article from US News and World Report:

3. Provide one more reason why Doctor Chazenbalk is doing this research. (Your response should be a paragraph 3-4 sentences long. Include references and in-text citations.)

Scientists can now take a cell from anybody’s tissue (for example, a skin cell) and turn it into a cell that behaves like stem cells from an embryo.

4. What are these special types of cells called?

5. Why are Doctor Chazenbalk and other researchers eager to use this technique with a specific type of cell to study heart disease? (Your response should be a paragraph 3-4 sentences long. Include references and in-text citations).

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