Mesenchymal Stem Cells Utilized to Treat Brain Cancer.

Mesenchymal stem cells utilized to facilitate tumor-killing viral treatment in brain cancer patients.

In a study conducted by the Harvard Stem Cell Institute at Massachusetts General Hospital, a research team led by Dr. Khalid Shah, MS, PhD, utilized Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) to facilitate the delivery of a tumor-killing virus into an animal model afflicted with brain cancer.  The virus was loaded onto the MSCs and encapsulated into a biocompatible gel that, when injected into the models, resulted in a higher viral efficacy and increased survival rate. Continue reading

Schizophrenia Study Utilizes Autologous Stem Cells

Neuron Precursor Cells derived from stem cells are being used to determine the origin of schizophrenia.

In a recent study published by the Salk Institute, researchers have utilized brain-like cells derived from the stem cells of patients to potentially identify the origin of schizophrenia. The scientists harvested and analyzed stem cells from patients with and without schizophrenia. Upon comparing the two sets of cells, they found that the schizophrenia-derived cells displayed abnormal gene activity and poor cell movement. This information will be critical in determining the onset and the cause of this severe brain disorder. Continue reading

Of Mice and Men: Human Stem Cells Utilized in Animal Model Treatment of MS Symptoms

Advancements in a breakthrough stem cell study may provide new treatment options for MS patients.

A team of researchers led by Professor Jeanne Loring of the Scripps Research Institute have advanced a potential treatment option for autoimmune diseases similar to multiple sclerosis by utilizing human stem cells to reregulate the immune system. In an animal model paralyzed by MS symptoms, the scientists differentiated human stem cells into early stage neural cells that, when transplanted into the spinal cords of the compromised mice, secreted proteins that halted the autoimmune attack and enabled the mice to walk and run again. Continue reading

NY Times Reports on Cancer Treatment Utilizing Patient’s Own Stem Cells

A woman’s bile-duct cancer has been successfully treated with her own stem cells.

As reported in a recent article in the New York Times, researchers from the National Cancer Institute have developed an immune system treatment for a woman afflicted with cholangiocarcinoma (bile-duct cancer) utilizing her own stem cells.  The scientists, led by Dr. Steven A Rosenberg, identified T-cells in the woman’s immune system that specifically attacked the cancerous cells in her body. They then used her stem cells to grow billions of these T-cells in a laboratory, and then infused the T-cells back into her bloodstream.  After 18 months of the treatment, known as adoptive cell therapy, the woman experienced considerable reduction of tumor size and quantity. Continue reading

Dental Stem Cells Differentiated into Brain-like Cells for Stroke Patients

Scientists have discovered the ability of dental pulp stem cells to grow into brain-like neurons.

Researchers from the University of Adelaide, led by Dr. Kylie Ellis, have discovered that dental pulp stem cells [DPSC] have the ability to differentiate into complex networks of cells closely resembling neurons found in the brain.  According to Dr. Ellis, “Stem cells from teeth have great potential to grow into new brain or nerve cells, and this could potentially assist with treatments of brain disorders, such as stroke.” She goes on to say “ultimately, we want to be able to use a patient’s own stem cells for tailor-made brain therapy that doesn’t have the host rejection issues commonly associated with cell-based therapies. Another advantage is that dental pulp stem cell therapy may provide a treatment option available months or even years after the stroke has occurred.”  Current drug treatment therapies for stroke victims must be administered almost immediately following the stroke – within hours.  This severely limits their application as most stroke victims don’t have access to these treatments within that timeframe. Continue reading

Leg Injuries Healed With Patient’s Stem Cell Therapy.

A new stem cell therapy allows patients to regrow leg muscle after traumatic injuries.

A research team led by Stephen Badylak at the University of Pittsburgh has used the patient’s own stem cells to help them recover from injuries in which over 50% of their leg muscle was lost. First, they implanted a biological scaffold into the wound.  Then, the patients underwent aggressive physical therapy, which directed the recruitment of stem cells to the site of injury to rebuild properly aligned muscle tissue. By the end of the treatment, patients exhibited muscle regrowth and at least a 20% increase in leg strength. Continue reading

Osteoarthritis Treatment Utilizes Autologous Stem Cells

Researchers have found a way to use a patient’s own stem cells to ease the pain of osteoarthritis.

In a recent Phase 1 Clinical Trial, a team of researchers at the National University of Ireland, Galway, were successful in developing a treatment for osteoarthritis that utilizes autologous [the patient’s own] stem cells. According to Professor Frank Barry, scientific director of the Regenerative Medicine Institute at NUI Galway, “Using the patient’s own stem cells we have been able to treat their diseased joints and relieve their suffering and burden of pain.” Continue reading

Bipolar Disorder Studied by Utilizing Autologous Stem Cells.

Researchers from the University of Michigan have used stem cells to study and progress bipolar disease.

New research published by scientists from the University of Michigan Medical School utilized stem cell-derived neurons to better understand and compare the origin and function of brain cells between people with bipolar disorder and those without.  The researchers observed that when differentiating the stem cells into neurons, the cells from people with bipolar disorder showed differences in gene expression and reacted differently to neurological stimuli. Continue reading

Paralysis Treatment Utilizes Stem Cells

Stem Cell transplants have been found to regenerate motor neurons to restore muscle capability after paralysis.

Professor Linda Greensmith and her team of researchers from University College London and King’s College London have utilized stem cells to return muscle function to patients paralyzed by nerve damage or spinal cord injury.  In a paralyzed animal model, the scientists observed transplanted stem cells growing along the injured neurons to restore motor capability to disabled muscle.  Blue light pulses were then used to control the newly restored muscle movement. Continue reading