Stem Cells

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  • Stem Cells
    • Unspecialised cells that can develop into other types of cell.
    • They divide to become new cells which then become specialised.
    • Found in the :
      • Embryo: where they become all the specialised cells needed to form a fetus.
      • Some adult tissues: where they become specialised cells that need to be replaced.
        • E.g stem cells in the bone marrow can become red  blood cells.
    • Stem cells that can mature into any type of body cell are called totipotent cells.
      • In humans they are only present in the early life of an embryo.
        • Beyond this the embryonic stem cells lose their ability to specialise into all types of cells.
    • Few that remain in mature animals are called multipotent stem cells.
      • These can only develop into a few types of cells.
    • In plants they are found in areas where the plant is growing.
      • Roots & Shoots.
      • All stem cells are totipotent in plants.
        • Can be used to grow plant organs/ whole new plants in vitro.
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