Extending the Frontiers of Knowledge

Canada has always been at the very forefront of stem cell research. From being used for bone marrow transplants to treat cancers such as leukemia, to recent clinical trials that use neural stem cells to treat spinal cord injuries, stem cells have the capacity to repair and mend our bodies. It is safe to say that the field is a stepping stone to transforming and restructuring health care as we know it.

The prospects of stem cells seem quite straight forward, but one aspect remains unclear to the majority of the public: what is a stem cell?

Stem cells are immature blood cells that have the ability to self-reproduce and differentiate into different types of tissues and cells. For example, a type called mesenchymal stem cells. that you can get from marrow or umbilical cords, can differentiate into red blood cells, white blood cells or platelets. Unlike specialized cells, such as muscle cells, that lack the ability to replicate and replace themselves, stem cells can divide and produce identical copies of themselves and has the ability to do so throughout the life of an organism. In other words, stem cells replace damaged cells that our bodies cannot replace naturally.

Stem cell research is only in its early stages of growth. However, by diving into this field, we can succeed in various therapeutic fields such as regenerative medicine since stem cells have the potential to create new cells, tissue, and organs that can be used for transplantation— saving millions of lives.

With that being said, SSSCR would like to invite you to our annual Stem Cells Conference, which will be held on January 27, 2018 at Bahen Centre. The Student Society for Stem Cell Research, or SSSCR, is an international network dedicated to the advancement of scientific research for cures. The day-long conference will encompass the many advancements towards the improvement of medicine using stem cells. It will present new discoveries and progress in stem cell research, specifically pertaining to ethics, policies, innovation, publication and technology. Researchers from a variety of hospitals and institutions in Toronto will be invited to present their current work on the topic of stem cells and how these cells have pioneered a number of innovative techniques. In addition to researchers, graduate students will also be invited to present their research. Furthermore, speakers will have the opportunity to conduct smaller-scale discussions on specific subjects within the field. Finally, there will be a panel discussion towards the end of the day looking at leading issues surrounding stem cells in medicine.

This conference will provide an opportunity for attendees to gain pertinent information regarding the basic principles of research, and to connect with professionals of the field in order to learn about the successful streak the field stem cells has had in extending the frontiers of knowledge.

Follow us on twitter @ssscr_toronto and our Facebook event page Stem Cells: Frontiers to get updates about the conference and ticket information.