DAVID GRANOVSKY

Archive for January 3rd, 2013|Daily archive page

STEM CELL TREATMENTS FOR MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS SISTERS?

In ALL ARTICLES, OFF THE BEATEN PATH, STEM CELLS - 101 on January 3, 2013 at 3:13 pm

Two sisters have MS.  I thought it would be interesting to see them both get stem cell treatments to see how their body’s and the stem cells reacted differently in such genetically similar people.- DG

A friend intelligently made the following comment:
“Even twins would have unique MS experiences. You have to consider multiple factors at play with MS symptoms. I know fraternal twins who experience the MS differently and have to be treated in different ways. There is no one-size-fits-all with having and treating MS.”

My response:
I agree there is no one treatment fits all but that is one of the unique attributes of stem cell treatments.  Stem cells work within the systems of your own body, utilizing your own cells to regenerate and rejuvenate necrotic and damaged tissue, to create new tissue and to pull your own body’s healing elements into play to fix what is wrong.  Stem cells, especially autologous (from your own body) stem cells used in therapy are a highly personalized individual treatment which will not only heal twins differently but will actually result in a different therapy each time the same person receives them depending upon what is currently needed by the body.

By analogy: 
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Imagine a drug is a big mack truck, driving along and crashing through anything in it’s way to attain it’s destination.  Now imagine your own stem cells follow all of the rules of the road and even stop and fix damaged roadway on it’s way to it’s destination.  The stem cells recruit helpers and construction workers and healers along the way and they will even build new roads if the area is too damaged to support the healing activity required.

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Now imagine a batch of stem cells in a different country with different roads, signs, ailments etc and because they are part of the original healing system of that body, they are able to navigate, fix, recruit and heal there as well.

I agree 100%.  THERE IS NO ONE TREATMENT FITS ALL.  There is also no such thing as ONE STEM CELL TREATMENT.

snowflake3w

Each stem cell treatment is unique to each individual.  As they should be.
At least, the treatments I advocate are.

A TREATMENT FOR ALS? Neural stem cell transplants slow progression of disease

In SCIENCE & STEM CELLS, VICTORIES & SUCCESS STORIES on January 3, 2013 at 2:33 pm
A treatment for ALS?
Neural stem cell transplants slow progression of disease

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“The transplanted neural stem cells help by producing factors that preserve the health and function of the host’s remaining nerve cells. They also reduce inflammation and suppress the number of disease-causing cells in the host’s spinal cord. The neural stem cells did not replace deteriorating nerve cells in the mice with ALS.  Researchers observed improved motor performance and respiratory function in the treated mice. The neural stem cell transplant also slowed the disease’s progression.

Twenty-five percent of the treated ALS mice in the study survived for one year or more — roughly three to four times longer than the untreated mice.”

Results from a meta-analysis of 11 independent amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) research studies are giving hope to the ALS community by showing, for the first time, that the fatal disease may be treatable.

Researchers say progress in treating ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, may be made by targeting new mechanisms revealed by neural stem cell-based studies.

“This significant research will help us better understand the mechanisms underlying motor neuron diseases,” said Yang (Ted) Teng, Harvard Medical School associate professor of surgery at the Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital and one of the study’s co-lead authors. Teng is also director of the Spinal Cord Injury and Stem Cell Biology Research Laboratory in the Department of Neurosurgery at Brigham and Women’s.

The research studies were conducted at Brigham and Women’s; the Harvard affiliates Children’s Hospital Boston and Veterans Affairs Boston Healthcare System; Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute; University of Massachusetts Medical School; Johns Hopkins University; State University of New York Upstate Medical University; and Columbia University.

“This is not a cure for ALS. But it shows the potential that mechanisms used by neural stem cells in our study have for improving an ALS patient’s quality of life and length of life,” said Yang (Ted) Teng, one of the principal investigators of Project ALS’ consortium project. File photo by Justin Ide/Harvard Staff Photographer

ALS causes nerve cells in the spinal cord to die, eventually taking away a person’s ability to move or even breathe. A decade of research conducted at multiple institutions showed, however, that when neural stem cells were transplanted into multilevels of the spinal cord of a mouse model with familial ALS, disease onset and progression slowed, motor and breathing function improved, and treated mice survived three to four times longer than untreated mice.

A summary of the findings from all 11 studies was published online in December in Science Translational Medicine.

“This work sheds new light on detrimental roles played by non-neuronal cells in triggering motor neuron death, and these events should be targeted for developing more effective therapeutics to treat ALS,” Teng said.

The transplanted neural stem cells help by producing factors that preserve the health and function of the host’s remaining nerve cells. They also reduce inflammation and suppress the number of disease-causing cells in the host’s spinal cord. The neural stem cells did not replace deteriorating nerve cells in the mice with ALS.

Researchers observed improved motor performance and respiratory function in the treated mice. The neural stem cell transplant also slowed the disease’s progression. Twenty-five percent of the treated ALS mice in the study survived for one year or more — roughly three to four times longer than the untreated mice.

“This is not a cure for ALS,” said Teng, who is one of the principal investigators of Project ALS’ consortium project. “But it shows the potential that mechanisms used by neural stem cells in our study have for improving an ALS patient’s quality of life and length of life.”

To read the full story, visit the Harvard Medical School website.

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