An Introduction to Stem Cells with a Focus on Those Found in Umbilical Cord Blood

Document Type


Publication Date



Biology | Life Sciences


Elizabeth Wurdak, Biology


Stem cells are on the cutting edge of medical research and have the potential to cure numerous diseases. However, many people do not know the difference between the two types of stem cells, embryonic and adult, which leads some to believe all stem cell research is immoral. By looking at the scientific, religious and ethical aspects of both embryonic and adult stem cells, this thesis aims to inform the non-scientific community about their differences and potential. Adult stem cells in umbilical cord blood are among the stem cells most rapidly growing in use. By comparing them to adult stem cells found in bone marrow, it is shown that they may have the potential to replace bone marrow as a source of stem cells and a fully stocked public umbilical cord blood bank could allow for all patients seeking a stem cell transplant to find a matched donor.