BACKGROUND: WHY DO WE NEED TO IMAGE STEM CELLS?. Over the last few years, cell-based regenerative medicine has appeared as a therapeutic option for many different disease states, such as musculoskeletal, endocrine, neurodegenerative, coronary artery disease, autoimmune diseases, and malignancies and has been a focus of significant attention of the scientific community. The main objective of cell-based therapies is to repopulate the damaged tissue with functional cells, with the final goal that these cells will integrate with the remaining functional native cells and contribute to the recuperation of lost function. Use of stem cells has been shown to regenerate different organs and systems, such as endocrine (e.g., pancreas), joints (i.e., cartilage), musculoskeletal (i.e., bone), and cardiovascular system (i.e., myocardium), and has also been used as adjuvant treatment for malignancies. A wide range of cell types have been used, including mesenchymal stem cells, embryonic stem cells, bone marrow-derived hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), bone marrow-derived endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs), and neural stem cells. A significant body of knowledge has been acquired in regard to the biology of stem cells and the potential benefit of their use in tissue and organ regeneration. However, several questions remain regarding the biology of stem cells in living subjects and how they integrate with native tissue.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)