Two recently announced stem cell studies highlight the amazing potential that stem cells hold in the treatment of ALS.
1. Neuralstem announced safety results were reported on the first 12 patients in an ongoing Phase I study to evaluate the safety of Neuralstem’s spinal cord stem cells (HSSC’s), as well as the transplantation technique, in the treatment of ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, orLou Gehrig‘s disease).
Researchers report that one patient has shown improvement in his clinical status, even though researchers caution that the study was not designed to show efficacy.Additionally, there was no evidence of accelerated disease progression due to the intervention in any of the 12 patients, who were followed from 6-18 months after they were transplanted with the cells.All of the patients, who received transplants in the lumbar (lower back) region, tolerated the treatment without any long-term complications related to either the surgery or the cells.
The trial has been approved to progress to cervical transplantations.
2. An international research team, led by the Euan MacDonald Centre for Motor Neurone Disease Research at the University of Edinburgh in partnership with researchers from King’s College London; Columbia University, New York; and the University of San Francisco, has created motor neurons using skin cells from a person with an inherited form of ALS/MND.
Researchers discovered that abnormalities of a protein called TDP-43, implicated in more than 90 percent of cases of ALS/MND, resulted in the death of motor neuron cells.This is the first time that scientists have been able to see the direct effect of abnormal TDP-43 on human motor neurons cultured in a dish.
Using cutting-edge stem cell research, which could speed up the discovery of new treatments for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) also known as motor neuron disease (MND) outside the United States.
Professor Siddharthan Chandran, one of the University of Edinburgh researchers said that using patient stem cells to model MND in a dish offers untold possibilities for how they study the cause of this terrible disease as well as accelerating drug discovery by providing a cost-effective way to test many thousands of potential treatments.
A press release from the ALS Association can be found here.
Research continues to show that stem cells hold great promise in treating a variety of diseases and conditions.Some conditions, such as joint, tendon and muscle injury, are treatable now with stem cells.Other conditions, such as ALS, diabetes and MS, appear to be treatable, but widespread treatment is still in the near-future.
Dennis M. Lox, MD, has been sucessfully preforming stem cell therapy for several years. Dr. Lox is located in the Tampa bay area in Clearwater, Florida
Information contained in this blog is intended for educational purposes only and not for medical diagnosis or treatment.If you have a medical concern or issue, please consult with your physician.