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Military College to Set Up Stem Cell Research Centre

disease and spinal cord injuries," the director general said. "Replacing dead cells in the retina with new ones may someday cure even presently incurable eye diseases such as glaucoma and macular degeneration," he said. Stem cells could be obtained from three sources: embryonic cells, adult cells (bone marrow) and umbilical cord blood cells from the placenta.

Lab tests carried out by scientists, Admiral Singh said, revealed that young stem cells could be used to replace the damaged or dead ones in diseased organs. "This stem cell therapy is similar to the process of organ transplant, only the treatment consists of the transplantation of cells rather than organs," he explained. Initially stem cell therapy was used only for treatment of blood diseases such as Thalassemia, Fanconi's anaemia and certain types of cancers as multiple myeloma and leukaemia.

"We are not playing god. Our intention is not to create a super human being but to repair diseased and damaged human tissues and organs," said Col. Harsh Kumar, head of the Department of Transfusion Medicine, AFMC. "Stem cell therapy, a futuristic treatment in medicine, is all set to revolutionise and replace drug-based treatment as stem cells have the potential to form parts of the human body. It is absolutely achievable," he added.



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