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Lecture

DEV2011: Lecture 30 summary

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Department
Medicine
Course
DEV2011
Professor
Various
Semester
Spring

Description
LECTURE 30 Embryonic Stem Cells (ES Cells): Embryonic stem cells are pluripotent stem cells derived from the inner cell mass of a blastocyst, an early-stage embryo. [1]Human embryos reach the blastocyst stage 4–5 days post fertilization, at which time they consist of 50–150 cells. Isolating the embryoblast or inner cell mass (ICM) results in destruction of the fertilized human embryo, which raises ethical issues. Those issues include whether or not a human life at the embryonic stage should be granted the moral status of a human being. Embryonic stem cells are distinguished by two distinctive properties:  Their pluripotency  Their ability to replicate indefinitely ES cells are pluripotent, that is, they are able to differentiate into all derivatives of the three primary germ layers: ectoderm, endoderm, and mesoderm. These include each of the more than 220 cell types in the adult body. Pluripotency distinguishes embryonic stem cells from adult stem cells found in adults; while embryonic stem cells can generate all cell types in the body, adult stem cells are multipotent and can produce only a limited number of cell types. Additionally, under defined conditions, embryonic stem cells are capable of propagating themselves indefinitely. This allows embryonic stem cells to be employed as useful tools for both research and regenerative medicine, because they can produce limitless numbers of themselves for continued research or clinical us
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