INTRODUCTION TO STEM CELL CRYOPRESERVATION – A NEWER PHENOMENON OF ENSURING THE LONGEVITY OF CHILD HEALTH: A CLINICAL REVIEW

 

About Authors:
Mr. Satyanand Tyagi*, Raghvendra1, Amlan Mishra2, Patel Chirag J3, Asheesh Singh4
*President, Tyagi Pharmacy Association & Scientific Writer (pharmacy), Chattarpur, New Delhi, India-110074.
Prof. Satyanand Tyagi is a life time member of various pharmacy professional bodies like IPA, APTI and IPGA. He has published various research papers and review articles. His academic works include 51 Publications (43 Review Articles and 08 Research Articles of Pharmaceutical, Medicinal and Clinical Importance, published in standard and reputed National and International Pharmacy journals; Out of 51 publications, 11 are International Publications).
He has published his papers almost in different specialization of Pharmacy field...His research topics of interest are neurodegenerative disorders, diabetes mellitus, cancer, rare genetic disorders as well as epilepsy.
1
Department of Pharmaceutics, Aligarh College of Pharmacy, Aligarh, U.P, India-202001.
2Department of Pharmacology, Smt. Vidyawati College of Pharmacy, Jhansi, U.P, India-284128.
3Department of Pharmaceutics, Maharishi Arvind Institute of Pharmacy, Mansarovar, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India-302020.
4Research Associate, Center for Research and Development, Ipca Laboratories Ltd Ratlam, Madhya Pradesh, India-457114.

*sntyagi9@yahoo.com,
+91-9871111375 / 9582025220

ABSTRACT:
The umbilical blood cord being rich in stem cells needs to be preserved by means of a new technique called cryopreservation. The Process whereby whole tissues or cells are preserved by cooling at very low temperatures is known as Cryopreservation. Stem cell cryopreservation is a relatively new phenomenon; it is one way of ensuring the longevity of child’s health. This is done by banking the baby’s umbilical cord blood affluent with stem cells. Stem cells are important as they can grow into tissues, even organs like the heart or liver. What is more, they have the awesome potential to revamp damaged tissues.

Till date, over seventy diseases have been successfully treated with the help of stem cell stored in the cord blood. Research on stem cells has, by no means, abated. Scientists realizing their potential and worth are carrying out intensive research on their uses as well as ways preservation. Before preserving stem cells, a biological test is carried out to eschew the possibility of deadly diseases like various types of Hepatitis or HIV. That done, the cord blood cells are now stored by means of the technique under discussion- Cryopreservation. This technique involves adding a cryopreservant that lets the blood freeze gradually. The blood is frozen to sub-zero degree temperatures so that biochemical reactions or any other dangerous biological that could cause cell death may be arrested. Typically, the cells are stored at temperatures as low as -196, – 156, or – 120 degrees centigrade. Freezing stem cells through cryopreservation at such low temperatures is supposed to ensure their longevity. Let it be known, however, that scientists are still divided over the optimum temperatures as well as the efficacy of the cryopreservation technique itself. The aim of present article is to provide in depth knowledge about this technique of preserving stem cells of child i.e. the technique so called “Cryopreservation”. An attempt is also made to focus how this technique ensures the longevity of child’s health.

Reference Id: PHARMATUTOR-ART-1488

INTRODUCTION

STEM CELLS
Stem cells are biological cells found in all multicellular organisms, that can divide (through mitosis) and differentiate into diverse specialized cell types and can self-renew to produce more stem cells. In mammals, there are two broad types of stem cells: embryonic, which are isolated from the inner cell mass of blastocysts, and adult stem cells, which are found in various tissues. In adult organisms, stem cells and progenitor cells act as a repair system for the body, replenishing adult tissues. In a developing embryo, stem cells can differentiate into all the specialized cells (these are called pluripotent cells), but also maintain the normal turnover of regenerative organs, such as blood, skin, or intestinal tissues.
There are three accessible sources of autologous adult stem cells in humans:
1.    
Bone marrow, which requires extraction by harvesting, that is, drilling into bone (typically the femur or iliac crest),
2.    
Adipose tissue (lipid cells), which requires extraction by liposuction, and
3.    
Blood, which requires extraction through pheresis, wherein blood is drawn from the donor (similar to a blood donation), passed through a machine that extracts the stem cells and returns other portions of the blood to the donor.

Stem cells can also be taken from umbilical cord blood just after birth. Of all stem cell types, autologous harvesting involves the least risk. By definition, autologous cells are obtained from one's own body, just as one may bank his or her own blood for elective surgical procedures. Highly plastic adult stem cells are routinely used in medical therapies, for example in bone marrow transplantation. Stem cells can now be artificially grown and transformed (differentiated) into specialized cell types with characteristics consistent with cells of various tissues such as muscles or nerves through cell culture. Embryonic cell lines and autologous embryonic stem cells generated through therapeutic cloning have also been proposed as promising candidates for future therapies [1]. Research into stem cells grew out of findings by Ernest A. McCulloch and James E. Till at the University of Toronto in the 1960s [ 2, 3].

CLINICAL APPLICATIONS OF STEM CELLS AND STEM CELL TREATMENTS
Stem cell treatments are a type of intervention strategy that introduces new adult stem cells into damaged tissue in order to treat disease or injury. Many researchers believe that stem cell treatments have the potential to change the face of human disease and alleviate suffering [4]. The ability of stem cells to self-renew and give rise to subsequent generations with variable degrees of differentiation capacities [5], offers significant potential for generation of tissues that can potentially replace diseased and damaged areas in the body, with minimal risk of rejection and side effects. A number of stem cell therapies exist, but most are at experimental stages or costly, with the notable exception of bone marrow transplantation. Medical researchers anticipate that adult and embryonic stem cells will soon be able to treat cancer, Type 1 diabetes mellitus, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, Celiac Disease, cardiac failure, muscle damage and neurological disorders, and many others . Nevertheless, before stem cell therapeutics can be applied in the clinical setting, more research is necessary to understand stem cell behavior upon transplantation as well as the mechanisms of stem cell interaction with the diseased/injured microenvironment [6]. Medical researchers believe that stem cell therapy has the potential to dramatically change the treatment of human disease. A number of adult stem cell therapies already exist, particularly bone marrow transplants that are used to treat leukemia [7].

In the future, medical researchers anticipate being able to use technologies derived from stem cell research to treat a wider variety of diseases including cancer, Parkinson's disease, spinal cord injuries, Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, multiple sclerosis, and muscle damage, amongst a number of other impairments and conditions [8].However, there still exists a great deal of social and scientific uncertainty surrounding stem cell research, which could possibly be overcome through public debate and future research, and further education of the public. One concern of treatment is the risk that transplanted stem cells could form tumors and become cancerous if cell division continues uncontrollably. Stem cells are widely studied, for their potential therapeutic use and for their inherent interest [9]. Supporters of embryonic stem cell research argue that such research should be pursued because the resultant treatments could have significant medical potential. It has been proposed that surplus embryos created for in vitro fertilization could be donated with consent and used for the research. The recent development of iPS cells has been called a bypass of the legal controversy.

Laws limiting the destruction of human embryos have been credited for being the reason for development of iPS cells, but it is still not completely clear whether hiPS cells are equivalent to hES cells. Recent work demonstrates hotspots of aberrant epigenomic reprogramming in hiPS cells (Lister, R., et al., 2011). For over 30 years, bone marrows, and more recently, umbilical cord blood stem cells, have been used to treat cancer patients with conditions such as leukemia and lymphoma [10]. During chemotherapy, most growing cells are killed by the cytotoxic agents. These agents, however, cannot discriminate between the leukemia or neoplastic cells, and the hematopoietic stem cells within the bone marrow. It is this side effect of conventional chemotherapy strategies that the stem cell transplant attempts to reverse; a donor's healthy bone marrow reintroduces functional stem cells to replace the cells lost in the host's body during treatment.

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