When a patient needs new skin. Doctors and researchers typically grow excess skin on other parts of their bodies – a process that can take months. A new technique uses stem cells derived from the Wharton’s jelly of the umbilical cord to generate new skin more quickly.
These mesenchymal stem cells inside the Wharton’s jelly are uncommitted. Which means that when they are combined with agarose and fibrin (a blood clotting protein) skin and mucosal cells can be made. Doctors and researchers are very exiting to have found new uses for mesenchymal stem cells from Wharton’s jelly. Which have previously been unknown as an epithelial application for patients.
The conventional way of skin making is very time consuming and can not be delivered at the spot when needed. Artificial skins on the other hand are more quickly generated and can be stored so it is ready when it is needed. Thousands of skin grafts are performed each year for burn victims, for people with large wounds cosmetic surgery patients. Traditionally, this involves taking a large patch of skin (typically from the thigh) and removing the dermis and epidermis to transplant elsewhere on the body.
The artificial skin requires the use of Wharton’s jelly mesenchymal stem cells.
Once the epithelial tissues have been created, researchers can store it in tissue banks. If someone is brought into the hospital following a devastating burn or accident. The tissue is ready to graft immediately; not in a few weeks. The used skin stem cell are not fully differentiated when used, but after cell-cell junctions the stem cells will develop all of the necessary layers of normal epithelial tissue.
Mesenchymal Stem Cells from cord tissue
The mesenchymal stem cells are taken from the umbilical cord after the baby has been born. Which poses no risk to either the mother or the child. This method is relatively inexpensive and has been shown to be more efficient than stem cells derived from bone marrow.