Difference Between Fetal and Embryonic Stem Cells | Fetal vs Embryonic Stem Cells

The key difference between fetal and embryonic stem cells is that fetal stem cells are comparatively more differentiated whilst embryonic stem cells are less differentiated.

Stem cells are a type of cells with the potential to be differentiated into many forms of cells. They also possess the ability to self renew and produce the same type of stem cells in larger quantities. Therefore, stem cells are the basis of development of an organism. There are many types of stem cells. Major types include fetal stem cells, embryonic stem cells, tissue-specific stem cells, mesenchymal stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells. Fetal and embryonic stem cells occur during the zygote development and they finally develop into a multicellular organism. Moreover, the general function of stem cells includes growth and multiplication to replace damaged or dead cells.


1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What are Fetal Stem Cells
3. What are Embryonic Stem Cells
4. Similarities Between Fetal and Embryonic Stem Cells
5. Side by Side Comparison – Fetal vs Embryonic Stem Cells in Tabular Form
6. Summary

What are Fetal Stem Cells?

Fetal stem cells are a type of stem cell present in the fetus. These stem cells are differentiated from embryonic stem cells. Hence, these cells are categorized as more differentiated cells than embryonic stem cells. Fetal stem cells possess the ability to divide, proliferate and produce progenitor cells that differentiate into specialized cells. Therefore, fetal stem cells are multipotent. They serve as the progenitor cells of the corresponding three germ layers: ectoderm, endoderm, and mesoderm. The differentiation of fetal stem cells from the embryonic stem cells occurs during the middle of the differentiation process.