Stem cell treatment of spinal cord injuries [Pharyngula]

I have to admit that my first response to these reports out of Britain that stem cells had been successfully used to repair a complete spinal cord transection was skepticism incredulity even. Theyre reporting that a man with a completely severed spinal cord at level T10-T11 is able to walk again! The Guardian gushes! The Daily Mail gets in the act (always a bad sign)! When I read that the patient had an 8mm gap in his spinal cord that had been filling up with scar tissue for the last two years, I was even more doubtful: under the best of conditions, it was unlikely that youd get substantial connectivity across that distance.

So I read the paper. Im less skeptical now, for a couple of reasons. They actually did this experiment on 3 people, and all showed degrees of improvement, although the newspapers are all focusing on just the one who had the greatest change. The gradual changes are all documented thoroughly and believably. And, sad to say, the improvements in the mans motor and sensory ability are more limited and more realistic than most of the accounts would have you think.

The story is actually in accord with what weve seen in stem cell repair of spinal cord injury in rats and mice.

Overall, they found that stem cell treatment results in an average improvement of about 25% over the post-injury performance in both sensory and motor outcomes, though the results can vary widely between animals. For sensory outcomes the degree of improvement tended to increase with the number of cells introduced scientists are often reassured by this sort of dose response, as it suggests a real underlying biologically plausible effect. So the good news is that stem cell therapy does indeed seem to confer a statistically significant improvement over the residual ability of the animals both to move and feel things beyond the spinal injury site.

Significant but far from complete improvement is exactly what wed expect, and that improvement is a very, very good thing. It is an accomplishment to translate animal studies into getting measurable clinical improvements in people.

The basic procedure is straightforward. There is a population of neural cells in humans that do actively and continuously regenerate: the cells of the olfactory bulb. So what they did is remove one of the patients own olfactory bulbs, dissociate it into a soup of isolated cells, and inject them into locations above and below the injury. They also bridged the gap with strips of nerve tissue harvested from the patients leg. The idea is that the proliferating cells and the nerves would provide a nerve growth-friendly environment and build substrate bridges that would stimulate the damaged cells and provide a path for regrowth.

Big bonus: this was an autologous transplant (from the patients own tissues), so there was no worry about immune system rejection. There were legitimate worries about inflammation, doing further damage to the spinal cord, and provoking greater degeneration, and part of the purpose of this work was to assess the safety of the procedure. There were no complications.

Also, Im sure you were worried about this, but the lost olfactory cells also regenerated and the patients completely recovered their sense of smell.

Now heres the clinical assessment. Three patients were operated on; T1 is the one who has made all the news with the most remarkable improvement. There were also three control patients who showed no improvement over the same period.

Neurological function improved in all three transplant recipients (T1, T2, T3) during the first year postsurgery. This included a decrease of muscle spasticity (T1, T2) as well as improvement of sensory (T1, T2, T3) and motor function (T1, T2, T3) below the level of spinal cord injury.

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Stem cell treatment of spinal cord injuries [Pharyngula]

StemGenex New Clinical Study Aims to Provide Relief to Osteoarthritis Patients through Latest Stem Cell Therapy

La Jolla, CA (PRWEB) October 21, 2014

StemGenex, the leading resource for adult adipose stem cell therapy in the US aimed at improving the lives of patients dealing with degenerative diseases today announced their newest clinical study in partnership with Stem Cell Research Centre for Osteoarthritis. StemGenex and Stem Cell Research Centre (SCRC) believe that a commitment to the safety and efficacy of stem cell therapy are paramount when providing care to patients with life threatening diseases.

There are currently 21 million people in the U.S. alone, who suffer from Osteoarthritis. The most common symptoms are joint pain and stiffness which most commonly affect the neck, lower back, knees, shoulders and hips. These symptoms gradually worsen over time ultimately leading to the need for a total joint replacement procedure. StemGenex believe their new clinical study may provide patients improved mobility, significantly reduced pain and ultimately a better quality of life without needing joint replacement surgery.

This clinical study makes stem cell therapy for osteoarthritis accessible to the millions of individuals currently struggling with this painful disease. The protocol used in these stem cell treatments is unique to StemGenex and SCRC, having the possibility of being more effective than other stem cell treatments currently available. These treatments will utilize a multiple administration method which also includes injections precisely targeting the joint space. StemGenex believes these treatments may be able to keep patients from needing joint replacement surgery in the future, due to regeneration of cartilage in the joint.

This clinical study will be conducted under the leadership of the principal investigator,Dr. Jeremiah McDole, Ph.D. Dr. McDole states, We are excited to begin enrolling for this new study. We have high expectations for what we will learn and what advancements can ultimately be implemented. Of course, our focus is always set toward the near future and what can be done to help improve the lives of those individuals with Osteoarthritis.

This study is registered through The National Institutes of Health which can be found at http://www.clinicaltrials.gov and is being conducted under IRB approval of Stem Cell Research Centre (SCRC). There are many patients who are exploring stem cell therapy for osteoarthritis and it is important they have access to top-tier stem cell therapy. By providing patients access to stem cell studies registered through The National Institutes of Health, patients now have the ability to choose treatment that focuses on both safety and efficacy.

Rita Alexander, founder and president of StemGenex stated With so many people suffering from Osteoarthritis its absolutely wonderful to provide a treatment that has not only shown efficacy but also to be minimally invasive. Over the last several years we have observed significant improvement in the symptoms of Osteoarthritis patients through stem cell treatment. Through these registered clinical studies, we will now be able to publish our findings over the next few years.

This clinical study follows on the heels of StemGenex latest clinical studies for both Parkinsons disease and Multiple Sclerosis. Stem cell treatment studies are currently being offered by StemGenex partnering with Stem Cell Research Centre (SCRC) to patients diagnosed with Osteoarthritis as well as degenerative neurological diseases. StemGenex takes a unique approach of compassion and empowerment while providing access to the latest stem cell therapies for degenerative conditions including Multiple Sclerosis, Alzheimers disease, stroke recovery and others.

To find out more about stem cell therapy, contact StemGenex either by phone at (800) 609-7795 or email Contact@stemgenex.com

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StemGenex New Clinical Study Aims to Provide Relief to Osteoarthritis Patients through Latest Stem Cell Therapy

Stem cell and clinical research advances to be presented at NYSCF's Ninth Annual Conference

PUBLIC RELEASE DATE:

20-Oct-2014

Contact: David McKeon 212-365-7440 New York Stem Cell Foundation @nyscf

Leaders in translational stem cell research from around the world will present the latest advances in stem cell science that are leading to better treatments and cures to disease and injury at The New York Stem Cell Foundation’s Ninth Annual Translational Stem Cell Research Conference.

The opening day of the conference includes a panel discussion on large scale, big data stem cell and genetic initiatives moderated by Susan L. Solomon, JD, CEO and Co-founder of The New York Stem Cell Foundation (NYSCF), with panelists George Church, PhD, Harvard Medical School; John Greally, PhD, Albert Einstein College of Medicine; Scott Noggle, PhD, The NYSCF Research Institute; and Eric Schadt, PhD, the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

Later that day, a discussion on neurodegeneration includes Kevin Eggan, PhD, Harvard University and the NYSCF Research Institute, who will discuss his research identifying an existing drug candidate that may be of use treating ALS and is entering clinical trials in the coming year. The following session on cell reprogramming and cancer includes Michael Milone, MD, PhD, University of Pennsylvania, who will discuss recent research results from his lab and his colleagues including the results of a clinical trial for leukemia featured in The New York Times last week. The first day closes with a conversation on personalized medicine featuring Dieter Egli, PhD, NYSCF Robertson Investigator at the NYSCF Research Institute and Columbia University; Rudolf Jaenisch, MD, The Whitehead Institute; and Sir Ian Wilmut, FRS, FRSE, University of Edinburgh.

On October 23, the day will begin with remarks by Kenneth Adams and Kyle Kimball, President of the Empire State Development Corporation and President of the New York City Economic Development Corporation, respectively. The session on translating innovation from the laboratory to the clinic features Stephen Chang, PhD, of the NYSCF Research Institute and Richard Pearse, PhD, of the Harvard Catalyst and eagle-i Network who will discuss their collaboration on the first publicly available induced pluripotent stem cell database. The day will close with a presentation on induced neuronal cells and cell transdifferentiation from the 2014 NYSCF Robertson Stem Cell Prize recipient, Marius Wernig, MD, PhD, of Stanford University School of Medicine.

Sir Ian Wilmut will give the keynote address on October 22nd and Dr. Rudolf Jaenisch will give the keynote address on the last day of the conference.

The full conference agenda can be found at http://www.nyscf.org/conference

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Stem cell and clinical research advances to be presented at NYSCF's Ninth Annual Conference

Media Advisory – Regenerative medicine experts come to Ottawa to share latest discoveries

OTTAWA , Oct.21, 2014 /CNW/ – The field of regenerative medicine harnessing the power of stem cells, biomaterials and molecules to repair, regenerate or replace diseased cells, tissues and organs …

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Media Advisory – Regenerative medicine experts come to Ottawa to share latest discoveries

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