How Scientific Research Confirmed the Potential of Mesenchymal
Stem Cells for the Regeneration of Damaged Brain and Spine
FRIDAY, 07 APRIL 2017
How Scientific Research Confirmed the Potential of Mesenchymal Stem Cells for the Regeneration of Damaged Brain and Spine
Scientists have devised clever experiments to investigate the healing potential of stem cells. Since these experiments have to be conducted under controlled conditions, they can only be performed in laboratory animals, such as rats.
In the following simplified summaries of different experiments are shown by which important properties of mesenchymal stem cells were proven.
- Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSC) have the ability to autonomously migrate to those areas in the body, where they are needed for repair and regeneration, e.g. the brain.
- Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSC) have the ability to transform into brain cells, both supportive glial cells and actual neurons.
In order to prove this scientists have extracted bone marrow from male rats. The mesenchymal stem cells from the bone marrow carry a Y-chromosome (determining male sex). This Y-chromosome can be used as a marker (green fluorescence). The male bone marrow cells were then injected into the bone marrow of female mice, who do not have a Y-chromosome in their cells (black nucleus). After periods ranging between 3 and 70 days, the researchers then investigated the female rats’ brains. They found both glial cells (star shaped) and neurons (round) containing a Y-chromosome (green fluorescence), proving that they were derived from the male rat’s bone marrow cells.
Eglitis M A, Mezey É. Hematopoietic cells differentiate into both microglia and macroglia in the brains of adult mice. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 1997;94:4080–4085. *Laboratory of Cell Biology, National Institute of Mental Health, and ‡Clinical Neuroscience Branch, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Bethesda, MD 20892.
Mezey et al. Turning Blood into Brain: Cells Bearing Neuronal Antigens Generated in Vivo from Bone Marrow. Science 2000;290:1779-1782. NIH
News & Insights
The Power of Exosomes
The term “exosomes” has frequently been in the news in recent years. They have been known to biologists since their discovery in the 1980s, but they remain something unknown to most other people. As their relevance in the pharmaceutical and medical field increases, we want to explain in simple ways what exosomes are, and why they are disrupting science.
Stem Cell Treatment Improves Degenerative Disc Disease (DDD) and Chronic Back Pain
Degenerative disc disease (DDD) is one of the most common sources of back pain and affects approximately 30 million people every year. It can lead to a chronic debilitating condition and can have a serious negative impact on a person's quality of life. Although several structures within the spine have been identified as sources of pain, the intervertebral disc accounts for approx. 40-50% of all chronic lower back pain. When pain from DDD is severe, traditional non-operative treatment may be ineffective.
Recent research has shown that the injection of bone marrow stem cells into degenerating discs can halt and in some cases even reverse their degeneration. This is important, because this in turn slows down or halts the cascade of secondary problems resulting from a degenerating discs, such as chronic back pain, restricted motion, spinal cord and nerve root compression with radiating pain in arms and legs, deformation and inflammation in vertebral bodies (osteochondrosis), facet joint arthrosis and others.
Does stem cell therapy for knees work?
As kids, nasty grazes aside, we may not have thought a lot about our knees. As adults, our situation is a little different. We may feel our joints hurt a little more often.
However, it’s not only those entering their twilight years who are susceptible to knee pain and degeneration. Anyone trying to maintain an active lifestyle or doing regular physical exercise will be no stranger to knee injuries.
Are knee surgeries the only way to treat these injuries and get rid of the pain? Luckily, no. Stem cell treatment is giving hope to patients worldwide. In this post, learn more about knee injuries and how stem cell-based treatments can offer a longer lasting solution to your knee problems..
Can stem cells help with orthopedic issues?
All around the world, patients with various diseases are turning to stem cell-based treatments to improve their conditions. People with orthopedic issues are no exception.
In this article, we’ll discuss the different orthopedic conditions and how stem cell therapy can help alleviate their symptoms and tackle their root cause.
How much does stem cell therapy cost?
If you, or perhaps someone close to you, suffers with a challenging illness, you may be exploring viable alternative treatments. You may even have come across stem cell therapy as an avenue to explore. But where do you start? And could you even afford it?