What Kind Are There?
The 3 Main Stem Cell Classifications:
Totipotent: A totipotent cell has the capacity to form an entire organism. Totipotent cells have total potential. They specialize into pluripotent cells that can give rise to most, but not all, of the tissues necessary for fetal development.
Multipotent: Having the ability to differentiate to a limited number of cell fates or into closely related family of cells.
Pluripotent: Capable of differentiating into one of many cell types.
The 3 Main Stem Cell Types:
Embryonic Stem Cells: Cells derived from early embryos that can replicate indefinitely and differentiate into many cell types. Stem cells serve as a continuous source of new cells; they may become incorporated into many tissues to produce chimeric animals when introduced into early embryos, ie, blastocysts.
Adult Stem Cells: Stem cells sourced from adult donors.
Umbilical Cord Stem Cells: A mixed population of stem cells found in the blood of the neonatal umbilical cord and placenta. This population includes multipotent embryonic-like stem cells, a population of hematopoetic stem cells, and a variety of stem cells capable of differentiating into virtually all adult human tissues.