British scientist found out a new way of developing stem cell. The said stem cell can only be use on liver transplant as scientists manage in producing working liver cells.
A team of researchers led by the Sanger Institute and the University of Cambridge used cutting-edge technology in correcting a genetic mutation in stem cells comes from a patient’s skin biopsy, and then grew them into fresh liver cells.
The scientist had proven that it is functioning when they used it on mice.
Director of the Sanger Institute, Allan Bradley says they develop a new system in targeting and correcting defects in a cell.
Bradley claims that the cell does not leave any trace of genetic manipulation with the exception of gene correction.
Stem cells source of all other cells. Scientists believe that they can create medicine, provide treatments for the blind, spinal cord and other severe injuries, and new cells for damaged organs.
Research has two main focuses — embryonic stem cells, which can be obtained from embryos, and reprogrammed cells, also called induced pluripotent stem cells or iPS cells, which got reprogrammed from normal skin or blood cells.
Back in 2006, when the world found out about them, iPS cells looked like an ideal solution to the ethical debate over the use of embryonic stem cells made in a lab from common skin or blood cells. Embryonic stem cells gathered from leftover embryos at fertility clinics, and most religious group did not like the use of leftover embryos.
However, in the current years, people got concerned about the safeness of using embryonic cells.
Last year, a group led by Robert Lanza, of the U.S. firm Advanced Cell Technology, evaluated batches of iPS cells among embryonic stem cells. They noticed that the iPS cells died more rapidly and can not grow and expand immediately.
In Wednesday’s study, printed in the journal Nature, the British team has taken some skin cells from a patient that has mutation occurring in their gene known as alpha1-antitrypsin, which is responsible for the creation of a protein responsible for protecting people against inflammation.
The researchers think that people with mutant alpha1-antitrypsin can not release the protein well from the liver, so it becomes trapped there, eventually leading to liver cirrhosis and lung emphysema. This is one of the most usual inborn liver and lung disorders that are affecting one in 2,000 people of North European origin.
When the scientists obtained the skin cells, they reprogrammed it back into stem cells and then used a t “molecular scissor” technique called a zinc finger nuclease in snipping the cells’ genome at exactly the right place and insert an exact version of the gene that uses a DNA transporter known as piggyBac.