Home pagePress monitoringGrow-your-own stem cells may repair Parkinson’s damage

Grow-your-own stem cells may repair Parkinson’s damage

Date: 24.7.2023 

Researchers from Scripps Research and Cardiff University used induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from skin cells of two people with Parkinson’s disease to grow young neurons, which were then transplanted into rats with the degenerative condition.

Kredit: NIH Image Gallery.By timing the growth of the new cells just right, they’re able to replace the damaged neurons and potentially reverse the physical impairments that come with the neural damage.

While there are current stem cell clinical studies underway, this is the first one to make use of autologous therapy, which means the cells are harvested from the person who will ultimately receive the transplant.

"This paper reports important progress toward development of an autologous cell replacement therapy for Parkinson's disease," said senior author Jeanne Loring, professor at the Center for Regenerative Medicine at Scripps Research. "These results give us confidence that personalized therapy is feasible for Parkinson's disease."

While there’s no cure yet for Parkinson’s disease, effective neural therapy would be able to intervene in its progression and even reverse existing damage. Worldwide, around 10 million people are living with the disease and there are very limited options for treating the symptoms that can rob sufferers of their independence.

"Knowledge of which genes are turned on in neuronal precursors that are in the optimal developmental state to treat Parkinson's can help researchers screen cells before transplanting them into patients," Loring said. "The gene expression analysis should greatly improve the probability of successful transplants.”

Image source: NIH Image Gallery.





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