Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Stem cells can be transplanted to the retina

18.03.2004


Transplanting stem cells to a diseased retina may be a method of treating certain common eye disorders in the future. In her dissertation, Lund scientist Anita Blixt Wojciechowski reports research findings that enhance the knowledge needed to make this treatment possible.



Retinitis pigmentosa is a hereditary retinal disease that affects one person in 3,500 and leads to severe vision impairment or blindness. Age-related deterioration of the yellow spot, the part of the retina that is most crucial to sharp vision, is another common cause of vision impairment. This disease (age related macular disease) affects nearly a third of all people over the age of 75. Today there is no good treatment for either disease.

Anita Blixt Wojciechowski’s research involves transplanting fetal stem cells from rats to the eyes of adult rats. She has experienced both success and failure in her work.


- We managed to get the transplanted cells to integrate and spread in the host’s retina. On the other hand, they did not develop into new, healthy nerve cells but rather into glia cells, which constitute a sort of support tissue, she says.

Many research teams have had trouble getting stem cells to develop into nerve cells. But there is an alternative solution. It should be possible to have the transplanted cells carry with them growth factors and other substances that can save the sick cells. They could also be supplied with genes that produce the substances that the sick cells are no longer capable of producing. For these purposes the transplanted stem cells do not need to develop into nerve cells. They can just as well be glia cells.

The ideal solution in the future would be to take stem cells from the patients themselves, according to Anita Blixt Wojciechowski. There are in fact stem cells on the edge of the retina even in adults. If these could be removed, cultivated in larger quantities, supplied with genes to produce the necessary substances, and then transplanted back into the diseased eye, there would be no problems of rejection and no ethical problems involving fetal stem cells. It’s a long road, but a few steps have now been taken in the right direction.

Ingela Björck | alfa
Further information:
http://www.lub.lu.se/cgi-bin/show_diss.pl?db=global&fname=med_902.html

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Tracking movement of immune cells identifies key first steps in inflammatory arthritis
23.01.2017 | Massachusetts General Hospital

nachricht Team discovers how bacteria exploit a chink in the body's armor
20.01.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin

For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.

According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Arctic melt ponds form when meltwater clogs ice pores

24.01.2017 | Earth Sciences

Synthetic nanoparticles achieve the complexity of protein molecules

24.01.2017 | Life Sciences

PPPL physicist uncovers clues to mechanism behind magnetic reconnection

24.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>