Within the cord blood industry, there was a strong growth period during the 2000’s. However, over the past few years, the market has substantially matured and consolidated. While strong industry growth continues within North Asia (particularly China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan) and Southeast Asia (led by India and Malaysia), growth of the North American market is flat and the European cord blood banking market is declining. [Read more…]
Hematopoietic Stem Cells (HSCs)
I had the honor of interviewing Kenneth Harris, Chief Advisor for CuraSense Advisors about cord blood industry growth rates and trends. There are many misleading metrics being released about the cord blood banking industry, so it was an honor to speak with another person who is extremely knowledgeable about the cord blood banking field. In this interview, we explore growth rates for the global cord blood industry, key trends affecting the industry, differences in geographic opportunities and more. Enjoy. [Read more…]
Stem cells are unique for the role they play. They are effectively the body’s raw material – the cells from which all other cells with specialized functions are created, such as those which constitute our blood, brain, or bone.
According to Sleepedia, that is not the only way they are unique. One of the defining features of stem cells is that unlike other cells, they don’t exhaust themselves. After undertaking their duties, they are able to enter a state of hibernation which allows for self-renewal.
They effectively go to sleep and in doing so they make themselves young again, a process known as reversible quiescence. In the body these sleeping stem cells can then remain dormant for years until called into action again. [Read more…]
As you start to learn about stem cells, one of the most common questions to have is, “What types of stem cells exist?” There is not an agreed-upon number of stem cell types, because one can classify stem cells either by differentiation potential (what they can turn into) or by origin (from where they are sourced). This post is dedicated to explaining the five types of stem cells, based on differentiation potential.
5 Types of Stem Cells by Differentiation Potential
The five different types of stem cells discussed in this article are:
- Totipotent (or Omnipotent) Stem Cells
- Pluripotent Stem Cells
- Multipotent Stem Cells
- Oligopotent Stem Cells
- Unipotent Stem Cells
All stem cells that exist can be classified into one of five groups based on their differentiation potential. Each of these stem cell types is explored in greater detail below.
1. Totipotent (or Omnipotent) Stem Cells
— Todd C Bertsch (@todd_bertsch) February 19, 2018
These stem cells are the most powerful that exist.
They can differentiate into embryonic, as well as extra-embryonic tissues, such as chorion, yolk sac, amnion, and the allantois. In humans and other placental animals, these tissues form the placenta.
The most important characteristic of a totipotent cell is that it can generate a fully-functional, living organism.
The best-known example of a totipotent cell is a fertilized egg (formed when a sperm and egg unite to form a zygote).
It is at or around four days post-fertilization that these cells begin to specialize into pluripotent cells, which as described below are flexible cell types, but cannot produce an entire organism.
2. Pluripotent Stem Cells
They’re aliveeee!! Turned our human pluripotent stem cells into beating cardio!!! ::happy tears::
Next up crispR KO fun… 👏🏼🔬📓💚 #stemcellscientist #WomenInScience #futureBIOhacker pic.twitter.com/GVg4pb9Xri
— Kristin Pagel (@DeeDeeTroit84) March 31, 2018
The next most powerful type of stem cell is the pluripotent stem cell.
The importance of this cell type is that it can self-renew and differentiate into any of the three germ layers, which are: ectoderm, endoderm, and mesoderm. These three germ layers further differentiate to form all tissues and organs within a human being.
Embryonic Stem Cells
There are several known types of pluripotent stem cells.
Among the natural pluripotent stem cells, embryonic stem cells are the best example. However, a type of “human-made” pluripotent stem cell also exists, which is the induced pluripotent stem cell (iPS cell).
Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
iPS cells were first produced from mouse cells in 2006 and human cells in 2007, and are tissue-specific cells that can be reprogrammed to become functionally similar to embryonic stem cells.
Because of their powerful ability to differentiate in a wide diversity of tissues and their non-controversial nature, induced pluripotent stem cells are well-suited for use in cellular therapy and regenerative medicine.
3. Multipotent Stem Cells
Did you know that bone marrow contains multipotent stem cells that give rise to all the cells of the blood? pic.twitter.com/NcYJsdPJXi
— caremotto (@caremotto) January 17, 2018
Multipotent stem cells are a middle-range type of stem cell, in that they can self-renew and differentiate into a specific range of cell types.
An excellent example of this cell type is the mesenchymal stem cell (MSC).
Mesenchymal Stem Cells
Mesenchymal stem cells can differentiate into osteoblasts (a type of bone cell), myocytes (muscle cells), adipocytes (fat cells), and chondrocytes (cartilage cells).
These cells types are fairly diverse in their characteristics, which is why mesenchymal stem cells are classified as multipotent stem cells.
4. Oligopotent Cells
The next type of stem cells, oligopotent cells, are similar to the prior category (multipotent stem cells), but they become further restricted in their capacity to differentiate.
While these cells can self-renew and differentiate, they can only do so to a limited extent. They can only do so into closely related cell types.
An excellent example of this cell type is the hematopoietic stem cell (HSC).
Hematopoietic Stem Cells
HSCs are cells derived from mesoderm that can differentiate into other blood cells. Specifically, HSCs are oligopotent stem cells that can differentiate into both myeloid and lymphoid cells.
Myeloid cells include basophils, dendritic cells, eosinophils, erythrocytes, macrophages, megakaryocytes, monocytes, neutrophils, and platelets, while lymphoid cells include B cells, T cells, and natural kills cells.
5. Unipotent Stem Cells
Finally, we have the unipotent stem cells, which are the least potent and most limited type of stem cell.
An example of this stem cell type would be muscle stem cells.
Muscle Stem Cells
While muscle stem cells can self-renew and differentiate, they can only do so into a single cell type. They are unidirectional in their differentiation capacity.
Purpose of Classifying the Stem Cell Types
The purpose of these stem cell categories is to assess the functional capacity of stem cells based on their differentiation potential.
Importantly, each category has different stem cell research applications, medical applications, and drug development applications.
Watch this video and learn about the 5 types of stem cells:
If you found this article valuable, subscribe to BioInformant’s stem cell industry updates.
We are the industry leaders in stem cell research, with research cited by The Wall Street Journal, Xconomy, AABB, and Vogue Magazine. Bringing you breaking news on an ongoing basis, join more than half a million loyal readers, including physicians, scientists, investors, and philanthropists.
In your opinion, which of the following types of stem cells have the best potential to form any tissue type? Mention them in the comments section below.
To learn more, view: Stem Cell Fact Sheet – Types of Stem Cells and their Use in Medicine
Below are our awards for the top five cord blood industry influencers worldwide.
These individuals are all renowned industry experts, innovative thought leaders, and highly sought after speakers, advisors, and board members. Their opinions on cord blood banking topics can substantially alter public perception.
Congrats to those on this list!