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Using Stem Cells to Regenerate Cartilage, Bone, and Heart Muscle

By Nikhil Mehta, 9:00 am on

Palm Desert senior home care providers often look after seniors who are in need of regenerative treatments. Thanks to recent research, scientists found that stem cells are useful in the regeneration of cartilage, bone and heart muscle. These stem cells can develop into almost any type of tissue and with new research the cells may be able to be manipulated to grow into tissue needed for different types of regenerative treatments and therapies. Stem cells contain a unique protein, OCT4, which allows them to develop into different tissues throughout the body. These cells are like a blank slate until they are activated by certain external signals to develop into the type of cell needed. 

OTC4 works by sitting on DNA and repressing or activating specific information to initiate cell formation. It works with transcription factors from outside sources like the retinoic acid receptor (RAR) and beta-catenin to turn on their genes. When these factors are activated by OTC4, it signals specific gene development. The transcription factor for each type of tissue is unique and more research is needed to use this knowledge in a practical manner. The most useful information from this research is that the researchers now have an idea of how the process works, which means they can manipulate these cells to make essential heart muscle, cartilage, and bone to treat those in need of these organs and tissues.

Now that more is known about how stem cells develop into other tissues, this knowledge can be used to manipulate the cells into regenerating tissue, offering treatment for heart conditions, cancer and bone diseases. Being able to use this in a clinical setting could mean treatment for conditions that were previously difficult or impossible to treat. The research is still in the early stages, but scientists are now using this information to work towards being able to manipulate stem cells to become what they need. They are also doing research on mature cells to see if they have similar transcription factors and are developed in a similar way.

Recovering from surgery can be challenging for seniors to do alone. With help from Home Care Assistance, your loved one will get the help he or she needs to manage daily tasks on a schedule that benefits his or her needs. Our reliable live-in and hourly Palm Desert home care is designed to help seniors of varying needs with everything from personal care and housekeeping to medication reminders and physical therapy. Call (760) 345-0001 today to learn more about our services and customize a care plan for your loved one.