DAVID GRANOVSKY

Archive for February 11th, 2009|Daily archive page

BUBBLE BOY CURED WITH STEM CELLS

In ALL ARTICLES, STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS, VICTORIES & SUCCESS STORIES on February 11, 2009 at 11:15 pm

bubbles

BUBBLE BOY CURE

Associated Press Wire Feed ^ | June 27, 2002 | PAUL RECER

Posted on Thursday, June 27, 2002 3:53:16 PM by NYer

WASHINGTON (AP) _ A single injection of genetically modified stem cells is all it took to cure two children of a complex form of an inherited immune system disorder often referred to as the “bubble boy disease,” researchers report.

An experimental technique that altered genes in bone marrow stem cells restored the immune systems of the children, researchers from Italy and Israel said in a study appearing in the journal Science. The children were born with what experts said was the most complex form of severe combined immunodeficiency disorder, or SCID.

“Both children have been cured but … both will be closely followed to see how it develops in the future,” said Maria Grazia Roncarolo of the San Raffaele Telethon Institute for Gene Therapy in Milan, Italy. The children, who were seven months and 2 1/2 years old when the therapy began, were released with healthy, functioning immune systems between 15 months and 24 months ago, Roncarolo said in Milan.

via BUBBLE BOY CURE.

FIRST UK BUBBLE BOY CURED WITH STEM CELLS

In ALL ARTICLES, STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS, VICTORIES & SUCCESS STORIES on February 11, 2009 at 11:12 pm

bubble

Boy in ‘bubble’ cured of life-threatening disease

A seven-year-old boy kept in a “bubble” for two months has become the first person in Britain to be cured of a rare life-threatening disease with a bone marrow transplant.

By Caroline Gammell

Last Updated: 4:31PM BST 03 Jun 2008

Rhys Harris, boy in a ‘bubble’, cured of life-threatening disease

Rhys Harris Photo: WNS

Rhys Harris was kept in isolation in the airtight chamber while his immune system was destroyed by chemotherapy and replaced by being given new bone marrow.

During eight weeks of treatment, his parents had to wear specially sterilised gowns and, although they could dress and cuddle their son, they were not allowed to kiss him.

Rhys was initially diagnosed with a mycobacterial infection – a “cousin” of tuberculosis – which is rare.

When doctors investigated further, they discovered that he had an underlying immune deficiency disease called Nemo, Nuclear Factor Kappa B Essential Modulator, which effectively stopped his white cells working properly.

Less than 12 people in the UK currently have the condition.

Rhys, from Newbridge in South Wales, was transferred from care in Cardiff to Newcastle General Hospital, one of two units specialising in treating such diseases.

The transplant took place last October and this week his parents Kevin, 44, and Dawn, 39, were told the procedure had been successful.

Rhys, who was left deaf after suffering meningitis as a baby, now has a “normal” immune system and is no more at risk from disease and infection than anyone else.

Mr Harris said: “We knew it was a slim chance but we had to take it. The flipside of the coin just wasn’t worth thinking about.

“Rhys just went through hell and back and back to hell again – it was a really tough time for all of us. He is really tough and resilient. He is a normal seven year old boy apart from this who loves rugby and adores his brother.”

Dr Mario Abinun, consultant paediatric immunologist at Newcastle General Hospital, said 25 similar transplants were carried out each year.

“This is the first time this operation has been carried out on a child with Nemo in the UK. When Rhys came in he was a very sick boy but now he is so much better.

“All the staff at the hospital are happy and glad to see the little boy getting better and enjoying the normal things boys should be doing – running around and being mischievous.”

via Boy in ‘bubble’ cured of life-threatening disease – Telegraph.

FIRST EVER BUBBLE GIRL CURED IN 2002!

In ALL ARTICLES, STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS, VICTORIES & SUCCESS STORIES on February 11, 2009 at 11:11 pm

soap-bubble

New procedure brings hope to girl with ‘bubble boy disease’

By Jack Katzenell -Associated Press writer

Published: Wednesday, July 3, 2002 8:26 a.m. MDT

JERUSALEM — A 2-year-old Palestinian girl who spent much of her life in germ-free isolation met reporters Monday, showing off her functioning immune system, repaired by a new procedure that offers her and others with her disorder a normal life.

Taher and Hayyam Abu-Saed, a Palestinian couple from Jerusalem, had been childless for 10 years when their first son was born. He died soon after birth of a rare hereditary disease, severe combined immunodeficiency system, or SCID, often referred to as “bubble boy disease.”

Their second child, a girl, also had the condition, but she was cured thanks to a bone marrow transplant from a healthy baby brother.

When the couple learned that their fifth child, Salsabil, had SCID, there was no donor available for her. “We thought she was doomed,” Taher Abu-Saed told The Associated Press.

Yet a bright-eyed and healthy-looking Salsabil appeared with the pediatrician who treated her, and with scientists who developed the cure.

Salsabil was the first baby in the world to be cured of the most acute form of SCID by a new procedure developed in Israel and Italy, said Shmuel Slavin, head of the immunology department at Hadassah University Medical Center in Jerusalem.

Story continues below

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Another child was cured by the same treatment shortly after at the San Raffaele Telethon Institute for Gene Therapy in Milan, which collaborated with Hadassah in developing the cure.

via Deseret News Archive | New procedure brings hope to girl with ‘bubble boy disease’.

AIDs FREE AFTER ADULT STEM CELLS!!

In ALL ARTICLES, STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS, VICTORIES & SUCCESS STORIES on February 11, 2009 at 7:09 pm

THIS IS HUGE!!

IN PLAIN ENGLISH:

2 YEARS AGO, A MAN WITH HIV RECEIVED AN ADULT STEM CELL TRANSPLANT.  HIS DONOR HAD A NATURAL RESISTANCE TO HIV IN HIS BLOOD.  WHEN HE RECEIVED THE TRANSPLANT HIS BODY TOOK ON THE RESISTANCE TO HIV AND HE HAS NOW BEEN FREE OF SYMPTOMS FOR 2 YEARS.

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OFTEN WHEN AN ADULT STEM CELL VICTORY IS IN THE NEWS, THE NAYSAYERS STATE THAT: IT WASN’T THE STEM CELLS THAT HELPED.
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A SPINAL CORD INJURY PATIENT WALKS AGAIN AND THE NAYSAYERS STATE THAT IT WAS THE PHYSICAL THERAPY THAT DID THE JOB.

.

CAN THERE BE ANY DOUBT THAT IT WAS THE ADULT STEM CELLS THAT HAVE MADE THIS MAN AIDs FREE FOR 2 YEARS?!

hooray202

AIDs FREE AFTER ADULT STEM CELLS!!

In ALL ARTICLES, STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS, VICTORIES & SUCCESS STORIES on February 11, 2009 at 7:07 pm

A 42-year-old HIV patient with leukemia appears to have no detectable HIV in his blood and no symptoms after a stem cell transplant from a donor carrying a gene mutation that confers natural resistance to the virus that causes AIDS, according to a report published Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The patient underwent a stem cell transplant and since, has not tested positive for HIV in his blood.

The patient underwent a stem cell transplant and since, has not tested positive for HIV in his blood.

“The patient is fine,” said Dr. Gero Hutter of Charite Universitatsmedizin Berlin in Germany. “Today, two years after his transplantation, he is still without any signs of HIV disease and without antiretroviral medication.”

The case was first reported in November, and the new report is the first official publication of the case in a medical journal. Hutter and a team of medical professionals performed the stem cell transplant on the patient, an American living in Germany, to treat the man’s leukemia, not the HIV itself.

However, the team deliberately chose a compatible donor who has a naturally occurring gene mutation that confers resistance to HIV. The mutation cripples a receptor known as CCR5, which is normally found on the surface of T cells, the type of immune system cells attacked by HIV.

The mutation is known as CCR5 delta32 and is found in 1 percent to 3 percent of white populations of European descent.

HIV uses the CCR5 as a co-receptor (in addition to CD4 receptors) to latch on to and ultimately destroy immune system cells. Since the virus can’t gain a foothold on cells that lack CCR5, people who have the mutation have natural protection. (There are other, less common HIV strains that use different co-receptors.)

People who inherit one copy of CCR5 delta32 take longer to get sick or develop AIDS if infected with HIV. People with two copies (one from each parent) may not become infected at all. The stem cell donor had two copies.

While promising, the treatment is unlikely to help the vast majority of people infected with HIV, said Dr. Jay Levy, a professor at the University of California San Francisco, who wrote an editorial accompanying the study. A stem cell transplant is too extreme and too dangerous to be used as a routine treatment, he said.

“About a third of the people die [during such transplants], so it’s just too much of a risk,” Levy said. To perform a stem cell transplant, doctors intentionally destroy a patient’s immune system, leaving the patient vulnerable to infection, and then reintroduce a donor’s stem cells (which are from either bone marrow or blood) in an effort to establish a new, healthy immune system.

Levy also said it’s unlikely that the transplant truly cured the patient in this study. HIV can infect many other types of cells and may be hiding out in the patient’s body to resurface at a later time, he said.

“This type of virus can infect macrophages (another type of white blood cell that expresses CCR5) and other cells, like the brain cells, and it could live a lifetime. But if it can’t spread, you never see it– but it’s there and it could do some damage,” he said. “It’s not the kind of approach that you could say, ‘I’ve cured you.’ I’ve eliminated the virus from your body.” Health.com: 10 questions to ask a new partner before having sex

Before undergoing the transplant, the patient was also found to be infected with low levels of a type of HIV known as X4, which does not use the CCR5 receptor to infect cells. So it would seem that this virus would still be able to grow and damage immune cells in his body. However, following the transplant, signs of leukemia and HIV were absent.

“There is no really conclusive explanation why we didn’t observe any rebound of HIV,” Hutter said. “This finding is very surprising.”

Hutter noted that one year ago, the patient had a relapse of leukemia and a second transplant from the same donor. The patient experienced complications from the procedure, including temporary liver problems and kidney failure, but they were not unusual and may occur in HIV-negative patients, he said.

Researchers including Hutter agree that the technique should not be used to treat HIV alone. “Some people may say, ‘I want to do it,'” said Levy. A more logical — and potentially safer — approach would be to develop some type of CCR5-disabling gene therapy or treatment that could be directly injected into the body, said Levy.

Less invasive options to alter CCR5 could be on the horizon within the next five years, said Levy. “It’s definitely the wave of the future,” he said. “As we continue to follow this one patient, we will learn a lot.”

One drug that’s currently on the market that blocks CCR5 is called maraviroc (Selzentry). It was first approved in 2007 and is used in combination with other antiretroviral drugs. Health.com: Who’s most at risk for STDs?

In 2007, an estimated 2 million people died from AIDS, and 2.7 million people contracted HIV. More than 15 million women are infected worldwide. HIV/AIDS can be transmitted through sexual intercourse, sharing needles, pregnancy, breast-feeding, and/or blood transfusions with an infected person. Health.com:What should I do if the condom breaks?

“For HIV patients, this report is an important flicker of hope that antiretroviral therapy like HAART [highly active antiretroviral therapy] is not the endpoint of medical research,” Hutter said.

CARDIAC STEM CELL TRIALS – THE US PLAYS “CATCH UP” – Part 2

In ALL ARTICLES, CATCH UP!, STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS on February 11, 2009 at 5:58 pm

heart2

Stem cell trial seeks participants

By Laura Ungar • lungar@courier-journal.com • February 11, 2009

In the next couple of weeks, Louisville doctors plan to begin enrolling patients for what they are calling the world’s first clinical trial using adult cardiac stem cells to heal hearts.

(FYI – THIS IS THE 20th OR SO CLINICAL TRIAL IN THE WORLD USING ADULT CARDIAC STEM CELLS BUT THE FIRST IN THE US. – DG)

Doctors from the University of Louisville and Jewish Hospital & St. Mary’s HealthCare hope to treat 20 patients who are suffering from heart failure, have had a heart attack, and need to undergo cardiac surgery. They also hope to recruit 20 control subjects.

“The true protagonists of the trial are not the investigators but the patients,” study leader Dr. Roberto Bolli, Jewish Hospital Heart and Lung Institute Distinguished Chair in Cardiology, said at a press conference today.

“It is the patients who generously volunteer…and ultimately advance the frontiers of human knowledge.”

The trial uses adult stem cells taken from the patient’s own cardiac tissue. A small piece of tissue that is routinely removed during bypass surgery will be frozen and sent to colleagues at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard University in Boston so that stem cells can be isolated, expanded and prepared before being sent back to Jewish Hospital for use in trial participants.

After the patient recovers for three or four months, doctors will inject the person’s own stem cells directly into cardiac scar tissue using a minimally-invasive cardiac catheterization procedure that reaches the heart through a large artery in the leg. Potential side effects of that procedure include, among others, infection, bleeding, heart attack and stroke.

Doctors say side effects of the cardiac stem cells are unknown because it’s the first time they are being used, but there’s no risk of rejection because they are the patient’s own cells.

Officials said doctors will treat all those whose cardiac stem cells can be grown, while those whose stem cells fail to grow would fall into the control group.

People who want to learn more about this study may call 852-1837 or e-mail cardiactrial@louisville.edu or rbolli@louisville.edu

via Stem cell trial seeks participants | courier-journal | The Courier-Journal.

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STEM CELL SCIENCE – New technology sheds light on rise of blood cells | Science | Reuters

In ALL ARTICLES, STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS on February 11, 2009 at 5:55 pm

red-blood-cells

LONDON (Reuters) – German scientists using new imaging technology said on Wednesday they have watched a single cell give rise to blood cells, bolstering understanding of stem cells.

The findings could one day allow scientists to create blood in the laboratory that hospitals could give to patients needing transfusions, said Timm Schroeder of the Institute of Stem Cell research in Munich.

“What we are looking at is where blood really comes from during development,” he said in a telephone interview. “Blood cells are born during the embryo development and we wanted to know from what type of cells they came from.”

The researchers, who published their findings in the journal Nature, developed technology that allowed them to track hundreds of thousands of cells in real time over a week.

Homing in thousands of endothelial cells, which line blood vessels, the researchers discovered that a subset was able to form blood cells.

“It is important to know the exact cell type that produces blood,” Schroeder said. “This is the prerequisite to tweak the system to produce blood cells from embryonic stem cells in a lab.”

Stem cells are the body’s master cells, giving rise to various tissues and the blood. Some types are found throughout organs, blood and tissue and are in immature form until they generate needed cell types.

Doctors hope to use them some day in a new field called regenerative medicine in which tailor-made transplants of tissues and perhaps organs can be grown from a patient’s own cells.

(Reporting by Michael Kahn; Editing by Maggie Fox)

via New technology sheds light on rise of blood cells | Science | Reuters.

STEM CELL S & CROHN’S DISEASE

In ALL ARTICLES, STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS, VICTORIES & SUCCESS STORIES on February 11, 2009 at 1:09 pm

 

HOPE FOR SUFFERERS OF CROHN'S DISEASE

HOPE FOR SUFFERERS OF CROHN'S DISEASE

Posted 3 September, 2008

I’m coming across more stories now that show that Stem Cell treatments are working for Crohn’s disease sufferers.  This is great news for these patients who suffer symptoms like diarrhea and continuous abdominal pain and cramps on an everyday basis.

Crohn’s disease is what plagued Billy Tytaneck, 25, of St Catharines, Canada. Diagnosed with Crohn’s at the age of 12, Billy had spent half his life battling the disease.  However, he was at the end of his rope and facing a complicated bowel removal surgery. But Billy had other ideas.  He had read of Repair Stem Cell treatment helping Crohn’s disease in the United States, but it had never been done in Canada.  So Billy took it upon himself to seek out a Canadian doctor who had used Repair Stem Cells to treat Lupus and Multiple Sclerosis (but never Crohn’s)- Dr. Harold Atkins, at The Ottawa Hospital.

Dr. Atkins agreed to Billy’s request and Billy became the first Canadian to be treated with stem cell treatment for Crohn’s disease.  How did that turn out?  Let’s hear from Billy:

I’m much, much better easily 100 per cent improved from what I was last year, Tytaneck said Tuesday in a phone interview from his home in Collingwood.

“It’s not perfect yet, but my symptoms are improving all the time, he said.

He recently began working as a mechanical engineer for a firm in Collingwood a job that would have been difficult for him to do prior to the transplant.

I can go out for a day and do anything without worrying about getting sick, he said.

It’s a huge difference. I enjoy everything so much more.

Tytaneck is hopeful raising awareness about the procedure will make transplants more common for other Crohn’s patients. People don’t even know there’s an option. I want it to be an option for anyone who’s facing surgery.

Billy has formed his own stem cell transplant for Crohn’s disease website to help attain that goal too.

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STEM CELLS & STROKE

In ALL ARTICLES, VICTORIES & SUCCESS STORIES on February 11, 2009 at 2:06 am
A STROKE OF LIGHTNING

2 STROKES...OF LIGHTNING

Can (ADULT) Stem Cells Block Stroke Damage? Yes, but in a Surprising Way – September 16, 2008

Instead of generating new cells as expected, they cause adult cells to protect vulnerable nerve tissue from inflammation

By Nikhil Swaminathan

STOPPING CELL DEATH: Scientists have shown how stem cells can slow down neuronal death after a stroke–and it’s not by replacing the damaged cells.

Injecting stem cells into the brains of mice that recently suffered a stroke can reduce nerve cell (neuron) damage by up to 60 percent, according to new research.

But the stem cells do not simply replace damaged tissue as previously believed. Instead, the immature cells trigger adult brain cells to switch gears and block a stroke-induced immune response that causes nerve damage.

“It is a paradigm shift,” says Sean Savitz, a neurologist at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston, who was not involved in the study. “The original idea is that you put cells in there and it would reconstruct the cells that died. … The beauty of this is there’s not just one mechanism; they are acting in many different ways.”

Over the past 10 years, he says, research has shown that stem cells have the potential to reduce inflammation, morph into new nerve cells, and stimulate production of fresh blood vessels (to nourish cells) and axons (the long fingerlike projections that neurons use to send information to neighboring cells).

via Can Stem Cells Block Stroke Damage? Yes, but in a Surprising Way: Scientific American.

MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS (MS) STEM CELL TRIALS – US PLAYS “CATCH UP”

In ALL ARTICLES, CATCH UP!, STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS, VICTORIES & SUCCESS STORIES on February 11, 2009 at 1:32 am
myelingraphic

SCARRED MYELIN SHEATH TYPICAL IN MS PATIENTS

While the US is about 5-10 years behind much of the world in Repair (Adult) Stem Cell treatments, I do applaud the fact that the MS Society has recognized the power of these cells to benefit MS patients AND is pro-actively pursuing treatment protocols.

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Stem Cell Transplant Trial Results – Comment By The Multiple Sclerosis Society

Article Date: 30 Jan 2009 – 1:00 PST

Ahead of the publication on Friday 30 January of a paper in The Lancet Neurology reporting the results of a trial involving stem cell transplantation in people with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (MS), please find below a comment from the MS Society:

Dr Doug Brown, Research Manager at the MS Society, said: “These are very encouraging results and it’s exciting to see that in this trial not only is progression of disability halted, but damage appears to be reversed.

“(ADULT) Stem cells are showing more and more potential in the treatment of MS and the challenge we now face is proving their effectiveness in trials involving large numbers of people.”

Background:

- Trial also uses alemtuzumab, previously shown to halt and potentially reverse disability so positive results may not be solely from the use of stem cells

- Trial originators also confirmed larger study of more than 100 is set to take place

- This further trial will distinguish what effect the use of alemtuzumab has on the overall results

The MS Society is the UK’s largest charity dedicated to supporting everyone whose life is touched by MS, providing respite care, an award-winning freephone helpline (0808 800 8000), specialist MS nurses and funds around 50 vital MS research projects in the UK.

- Multiple sclerosis is the most common disabling neurological disorder affecting young adults and an estimated 85,000 people in the UK have MS.

- MS is the result of damage to myelin – the protective sheath surrounding nerve fibres of the central nervous system – which interferes with messages between the brain and the body. For some people, MS is characterised by periods of relapse and remission while for others it has a progressive pattern.

- Symptoms range from loss of sight and mobility, fatigue, depression and cognitive problems. There is no cure and few effective treatments.

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via: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/137257.php

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