Not All Stem Cells Are Created Equal
Researching stem cell therapy can be a daunting task for those wanting to learn more about how it might be beneficial. On one hand, stem cell therapy carries the potential to be a revolutionary treatment option when used correctly for certain conditions. On the other hand, there is a lot of misinformation out there about stem cells. Some clinics are not up-front about the source of their stem cells and others exaggerate or outright lie about their effectiveness for any given condition.
Even if a clinic is up-front about the source of their stem cells, how do you know if these stem cells are the right kind of stem cells and if they will be useful for you? In this article, we discuss the different kinds of stem cells and which ones are useful in medical application for given conditions.
Kinds of Stem Cells
The definition of ‘stem cell’ is an undifferentiated cell of a multicellular organism which is capable of giving rise to indefinitely more cells of the same type, and from which certain other kinds of cells arise by differentiation.
There are three kinds of stem cells:
- Embryonic stem cells
- Non-embryonic (adult) stem cells
- Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs)
When researching stem cells and their usefulness, it is additionally beneficial to understand the difference between pluripotent, multipotent and totipotent. Totipotent stem cells can form all the cell types in a body, plus the extraembryonic, or placental, cells. Pluripotent stem cells can just form all the cell types in a body. Multipotent stem cells can develop into more than one cell type, but are more limited than pluripotent stem cells.
The most common stem cells currently used in stem cell therapy are multipotent stem cells known as mesenchymal stromal (stem) cells (MSCs). Mesenchymal stem cells are found traditionally in bone marrow, but can be extracted from other tissues including cord blood, peripheral blood, fallopian tube, and fetal liver and lung. Our MSCs at Stem Cells LA are extracted from umbilical cords. You might have heard about mesenchymal stem cells if you watched the Joe Rogan Experience episode with Mel Gibson and Dr. Neil Riordan.
Understanding the benefits of MSCs and the meaning behind multipotent is important to see through the hype when overzealous doctors or clinics misrepresent the abilities of stem cell therapies. Because MSCs are multipotent, they can differentiate into many cell types and be useful for many treatments. However, they are not pluripotent or totipotent, meaning they cannot differentiate into any cell type and also should not be misrepresented as a cure all.
One clinic recently marketed stem cells sourced from animals, taken in pill form, and being a cure for literally every condition you can think of; including Alzheimers, vitiligo and multiple sclerosis! Clinics like these truly prey upon those not educated on stem cells and the practical applications of stem cell therapy.
When you speak to a professional doctor at Stem Cells LA, we never make promises about any treatment’s ability to cure any condition. For certain conditions, stem cell therapy may be a beneficial treatment option. Only a doctor can help you decide if stem cell therapy is right for you.
Book an Appointment with Stem Cells LA Today
Stem Cells LA is the best choice for stem cell therapy in Los Angeles. We utilize treatments of up to 30 million heterogeneous umbilical cord stem cells including mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) for conditions including autoimmune disease, heart disease, orthopedic disease, neurological disease, urologic disease, erectile dysfunction and antiaging. We even use the restorative properties of stem cell treatments to help reduce healing time from procedures such as hair transplants and other procedures. Only a doctor can help you decide if stem cell treatments are right for you.
To book a consultation with Stem Cells LA, visit our appointment page or call us today at 310-281-6160.
National Institutes of Health
New York State Stem Cell Science