Adult Stem Cells

Adult Stem Cells are undifferentiated cells that can be found in adult human tissue or organs. Most commonly they can be found in bone marrow. The significance of these cells is that they can be removed and grow in a lab dish then be used to make other major tissues and organs. The only issue is that adult stem cells are more difficult to use because they are “partially differentiated”. But new techniques and technology have shed some light on the issue making Adult Stem Cells more versatile.

How Do They Get Adult Stem Cells

Iliac Crest Bone Marrow Aspiration

-Surgeons will first take precise measurements with an X-Ray machine or MRI. Then after marking the patient they will use a surgical drill to access hematopoietic tissue found in the cavities inside the iliac bone. They will extract a certain amount from the body. Then those cells extracted will then be filtered to collect the stem cells. Side effects include; bleeding at insertion site, swelling, and sometimes infection.


Peripheral Stem Cell Harvest

-Two lines are attached to the apheresis catheter. One line will take blood from the body and one will return it. As the blood leaves the body a machine separates the stem cells from the blood and collects them and then the remaining blood is treated and returned to the body. It takes approximately 3-4 hours to collect a viable amount of stem cells. Many anti-clotting drugs are added to the blood so there are many possible side effects such as; swelling, fever, diarrhea, rash abdominal pain, hair loss, and infection  


What Can They Possibly Treat?


                -Aplastic anemia


                -Sickle Cell Anemia

                -Breast Cancer