Researchers at Adelaide University have developed a potential therapy for stroke victims utilizing dental stem cells to regenerate damaged brain cells. The study involved the use of human dental pulp stem cells in rats suffering from post- stroke symptoms. The stem cells were transplanted into the damaged brains of the rats with the rats showing significant improvement in brain function, motor skills and cognitive abilities within several weeks. The therapy poses a new possibility for patients who have suffered a stroke. Patients will be able to use stem cells extracted from their own teeth to regenerate damaged brain tissue. The use of autologous stem cells eliminates the risk of rejection and the need for immune-suppression drugs and results in a more positive outcome. The research is so promising that the researchers hope to begin clinical trials within three to four years.
As an example of the resources both the private and public sectors are directing to regenerative medicine, Scotland announced a new stem cell research center and biomedical incubator to research stem cell therapies for conditions such as Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Motor Neuron Disease, and Heart and Liver Disease. In this new facility, there are accommodations for 250 scientists and includes the most up-to-date facilities in the UK.