The stem cell euphoria – How far can we ride the wave?

With the advent of technologies like induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), that is considered the most significant and impactful life-science discovery of the past decade and earned the Nobel Prize in Medicine (2012) for the discoverer scientist, Dr. Shinya Yamanaka (USA/Japan), the in vitro models for drug testing have again come to the fore of the pharmaceutical drug discovery and development research. The capacity of these cells to self renew, as well as properties of pluripotency, that allow differentiation to any cell type of the body, opens a plethora of opportunities for drug screening and toxicological analyses in preclinical settings. Their capacity to retain the genetic and molecular profile of the original donor (patient) of adult somatic cells has opened new vistas in the field of stem cells and regenerative medicine, which was earlier mired by ethical concerns associated with embryonic stem cell research. The various avenues of research and development that utilize the stem cell and related technologies are,
1) Bio-banking of human clinical samples,
2) Use of iPSCs and its derivatives for Drug Discovery and Disease Modeling,
3) Use of iPSC Derived Differentiated Lineages such as Cardiomyocytes, Hepatocytes, Neuronal Cells for Drug Toxicology, and
4) Regenerative Medicine and Therapy.
STEM CELLS: APPLICATIONS TO CANCER RESEARCH Recent advances in cancer prevention and management have led to an exponential increase of cancer survivors worldwide. Regrettably, cardiovascular disease and liver failure has risen in the aftermath as one