The fundamental science of pluripotent and multipotent stem cells will be the central theme of this Columbia University online course. Using a multidisciplinary approach, our aim is to provide a detailed exploration of the newest emerging scientific advancements and technologies in embryo and adult stem cell research, as well as an examination of actual and potential medical applications.

These modules were initially designed to accompany the Columbia University classroom course: "Stem Cells: Biology, Ethics, and Applications". We have now adapted the course to supplement any university course that focuses on stem cell research and potential medical and scientific applications. Undergraduate and graduate students as well as all others who have an interest in stem cell science, bioethical and social implications, and regulatory issues should find this course informative.

Within the eight Modules and Supplements of the online course, the reader will find:
  • Presentation of advances in stem cell science and relevant ethical implications
  • Historical and political perspectives
  • Current and futuristic case studies
  • References to seminal papers and reports
  • Questions to promote thought and discussion
  • Technical terms that are linked to a Glossary containing brief, easy to understand definitions
  • Resources for further study
  • “Expand Your Knowledge of Bioethics” examples that allow the reader to view opposing views on contentious bioethical issues


While the promise of stem cell therapies excites us, it also energizes YouTube creators to craft entertaining skits. You may enjoy this song parody of stem cell research and disease.

A Musical Interlude




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