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Stem cell transplantation for blindness, retinal disease is close to human evaluation

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New research results bring clinicians one step closer to treatment Vision to degenerate, And even blindness, stem cell therapy.

A new assessment from an international team of researchers shows that retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) stem cell-derived RPE (hRPESCE-RPE) transplantation (previously shown to save vision in a rat model of retinal dystrophy) is non-human and safe. Primates that have shown that they can be done.

Research led by authors, including Dr. Timothy A. Blenkinsop of the Blenkinsop Institute at Ikarn Medical University in Mount Sinai, showed that the hRPESCE-RPE monolayer was able to recover. In vivo And it maintains healthy photoreceptors in 3 months. Positive results may indicate that stem cell monolayer transplantation is a safe and promising prospect for human patients with chronic diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

In an interview with HCP Live® Regarding the new study, Blenkinsop highlights three outstanding findings in the latest advances in animal model evaluation of RPE transplantation: safety, maintenance of visual recording sensitivity and eye characteristics, and signs of the onset of transplanted cell performance. Did.

He emphasized that non-human primates have high visual acuity areas in their eyes, which is a good omen for considering human applications.

Although all seven models observed survived the procedure, Blenkinsop pointed out some complications from transplantation. This is primarily due to transplantation issues, not the transplanted cells themselves. He believes this is a limitation that can only be resolved by gaining future experience.

“Surgical complications are most relevant to’practice perfection’,” he said. “This is a very early day, so the surgeon will only get better.”

The potential for the use of stem cell therapy to restore or improve vision in patients with chronic disease or blindness has long been a hope, and more resources and evidence are available in the short term. According to Brenkinsop, his team now has an “inexhaustible supply” of cells from the New York eye bank, which is contributing to future evaluations, and cell antigens for future patients. A brief “compatibility matching” between them is required.

Currently, it is estimated that up to 11 million people in the United States are suffering from AMD, a total of which is expected to double in the rapidly aging population by 2050. Although this is a group, Blenkinsop and colleagues are primarily hRPESCE-RPE, and as science advances, more patients with debilitating eye conditions may be eligible.

“The cells we transplant are associated with dozens of eye-related diseases,” said Blenkinsop. “It’s the largest population, but it’s by no means the only one.”

The study “Surgical transplantation of human RPE stem cell-derived RPE monolayers into non-human primates with immunosuppression” has been published online. Stem cell report..

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