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Allogeneic Stem Cells

Mar 09, 2022

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In this Treasure for Science & Technology, we will acquaint you with crucial information on Allogeneic Stem Cells that will enhance your UPSC exam preparation.

Stem cells are special human cells that are able to create many different cell types. Allogeneic Stem Cells transportation includes transferring the stem cells from a healthy individual (the donor) to a patient’s body to suppress the disease and restore the patient’s immune system. 
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Allogenic Stem Cell Transplant

Allogenic stem cell transplant is possible when the donor's HLA (human leukocyte antigens) matches the patient's. Potential donors, in this case, can include relatives with partially matched stem cells, siblings with perfectly matched stem cells or ideal individuals found on the National Marrow Donor Program. 

Allogenic Stem Cell Transplant treats lymphomas, multiple myeloma, leukaemia, myelodysplastic syndrome, and some bone marrow disorders.

What are Allogenic Stem Cells?

Allogenic Stem Cells are stem cells extracted from a donor's body and used to boost a patient's immune system. They are used in Allogenic Stem Cell Treatment, one type of stem cell transplant. The other type is called Autologous Stem Cell Transplant.

What are Stem Cells?

To put it simply, stems cells are the body's raw materials. They are immature, undifferentiated cells developing into several types of new cells in the body. In short, cells with specialized functions are generated from these. Stem cells can regenerate themselves on a long-term basis, along with the ability to replicate and split themselves for longer durations.  

The purpose of stem cell transplants is to replace diseased stem cells with healthier ones and cure chronic or severe diseases like lymphoma. The transplant process becomes necessary when the patient's body cannot produce enough blood cells or when the bone marrow becomes infected. On the other hand, it could also be required when excessive chemotherapy or radiation destroys the stem and cancerous cells simultaneously.  

Why are stem cells used?

Stem cells can divide and form new cells called daughter cells. These daughter cells are unique. They can become new stem cells or evolve into specialized cells with specific functions like blood cells, brain cells, heart muscle cells or bone cells. Stem cells are unique because no other cell in the body can generate new types of cells. 

What is the advantage of using an Allogenic stem cell transplant?

A donor's stem cells are highly effective in killing any cancer cells that remain after high-dose treatment because they produce their immune cells. This is also called graft-versus cancer. 

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What are the risks of using this procedure?

The advantages are not without their risks. The graft in the patient's body might not react well to the donor's stem cells. The patient's body might reject the new cells or kill them before settling in the patient's bone marrow. 

In addition, there is the added risk of the donor's cells attacking the healthy cells and the cancerous ones in the patient's body. When this happens, it is referred to as a graft-versus-host disease.

Also, watch Revision Strategy for UPSC Prelims 2022 by Vivek Singh Sir, our DREAM TEAM faculty for Economy:

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