Among the following stem cells, which are found in the umbilical cord?
The stem cells found in the umbilical cord are “Cord blood stem cells”. Stem cells show three basic characteristics. They are (i) Stem cells divided to produce daughter cells (ability to renew themselves), (ii) stem cells differentiate to form specialized cell types (tissues from all three germ layers: ectoderm, endoderm, and mesoderm), and (iii) stem cells have the ability to renew the tissue (blood cells, gut epithelium, and skin cells) they populate.
There are three types of stem cells: Embryonic stem cells: Are present in the inner cell mass of the blastocyst, three to five days after an egg cell is fertilized by a sperm. They are pluripotent in nature and can give rise to every cell type. Tissue-specific stem cells or adult stem cells: These types of stem cells are differentiated to generate different cell types for the organ in which they present. Induced pluripotent stem cells: Engineered stem cells generated in the lab.
Umbilical cord stem cells are found in Wharton’s jelly, umbilical cord, amnion/placenta, and umbilical cord vein. The umbilical cord stem cells are multipotent stem cells capable of differentiating to form different types of cells. There are three main types of stem cells present in the umbilical cord blood stem cells. They are (i) hematopoietic stem cells, (ii) mesenchymal stem cells, and (iii) a very small population of embryonic-like stem cells.