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Stem Cells – The Medical Miracle

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Stem cell banking, cord blood, pluripotency

Consider a plant. Look at its stem. No one can say what plant it is, because the stem looks more or less the same in all plants. It is the branching pattern, size and shape of leaves, height, flowers and fruits that help in identifying. In other words, it is only from the offshoots of the undistinguishing stem that the particular plant is identified. The stem is an anonymous common entity, present very early in the growth and development of the plant, coming just after the roots. No stem, no tree.

What are Stem Cells

Similarly stem cells are anonymous cells that cannot be called as a muscle cell, blood cell, nerve cell, bone cell, heart cell, lung cell, bowel cell, eye cell or skin cell. They are one of the earliest cells to form during the development of the baby inside the mothers’ womb. We are talking about 5 to 7 days’ after the man’s sperm penetrates the woman’s egg to create a zygote (embryonic baby). They are the basic primordial cells that can mature into adult cells on programming them to become one.

Why are they Special

What makes them special is their so called pluripotency.  To understand clearly, a blood cell can only make another blood cell; a skin cell can only make another skin cell. A blood cell cannot be coaxed into becoming a skin cell easily and vice versa. Nerve cells are the worst; their number is fixed at birth. Throughout life, the nerve cells only grow in size but not in number. But stem cells are capable of maturing into any type of adult cell in the body, be it bone, muscle, nerve, heart, lung, eye or skin.

How to Bank

But how can you get your baby’s stem cells for banking if they are present only in 5th – 7th day stage of its growth inside your womb? Some of them remain in cord blood. Your unborn baby is attached to your womb by a cord known as umbilical cord, the attachment site on your baby’s side ultimately becoming the belly button after birth. During delivery, after your baby is born, the umbilical cord and placenta (a flat, round pancake like structure inside your womb to which the umbilical cord is attached at your end) are delivered. The residual baby’s blood present in the umbilical cord is rich in baby’s stem cells, which can be harvested. On an interesting note, harvestable stem cells are present in small numbers in adults also.

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Thursday, October 02nd, 2014
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Thursday, October 02nd, 2014

Travel arrangements may have to be put off because of unexpected developments that keep you where you are. You may be worried about the consequences, but don’t waste your energy. You’ll be able to make the necessary trip, and accomplish whatever you’re hoping to do – just not today. Worry will only stress you out. The only productive way to deal with this is to keep moving.

The energy today could bring highly charged feelings to the surface. More than usual, you can be hurt by the words and actions of others. No one may guess, because you prefer not to show negative reactions. Stay calm and simply do the best you can with ordinary things.

You could meet some fascinating people and perhaps learn earthshaking information that impacts your life. You might consider new lifestyle options. A group, possibly spiritual or metaphysical, could seem attractive. You might consider joining it. Expect some fascinating discussions with a significant other. Books and other publications could prove enlightening.

Oppressive stress on you or those close to you could cause disconcerting upsets within your relationships today. Try to be objective and work things out rationally instead of going to pieces. Avoid being sucked into quarrels where you might say things you’ll regret. Don’t let this temporary situation get the best of you. Make the effort to stay focused and relaxed. Tomorrow all should be back to normal.

Your emotions will feel stable today although there may be an unexpected element trying to sneak into the equation. Be aware that people will be a bit more volatile today. Although the situation may be calm and cool one minute, it has the potential to be explosive the next. Try to stay centered all day so you don’t get thrown off course by other people’s erratic emotions.

You’re feeling especially healthy, energetic, and attractive today, and some friends may suddenly see you in a new light. This could bring a valuable boost in self-confidence. New careers that pay more and offer more of a challenge are especially appealing to you now. Consider them seriously. Write down your ideas and research them to see if they’re workable. This may be the start of a whole new life.

You might pick up some rather disturbing thoughts from a friend, neighbour, or relative. This person could be upset over something and not communicating his or her feelings. It isn’t appropriate to try to coax this person into sharing with you now. They aren’t upset with you, but they might be if you push! Back off and let this person come to terms with the problem. Your friend will talk the time is right.

It’s possible to have and even enjoy friends with views that differ radically from your own. Honest communication clears the air and supports a fresh start. How active are you? Sports, fitness training, or outdoor adventures with friends bring greater happiness and contentment. Finish outstanding projects before starting anything new.

You could be invited on a last-minute adventure today. By all means, seize the chance! You’re certainly ready for a change, and this opportunity could turn out to be just what you’ve been hoping for. Adventure calls, and whether it’s a journey or a lecture, you’ll find it enlarges your world in just the way you’d hoped. Today promises to be stimulating as well as fun. Enjoy it!

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