Thursday, March 24, 2011

Adult stem cells help stop aggressive MS

Greek doctors have used chemotherapy and a transplant of patients' adult stem cells to stop the progression of agressive multiple sclerosis. David Prentice, Senior Fellow for Life Sciences at the Family Research Council explains the study's results:
The team observed a group of 35 patients who received transplants of their own bone marrow adult stem cells after being treated with chemotherapy to wipe out the rogue immune cells that were attacking their nervous system and causing their MS. An average of 11 years after their transplants, 25% of the patients in Greece have not seen their disease progress, the researchers report. Among patients with active lesions on MRI scans before their transplants, indicating that they were in an inflammatory phase of the disease, 44% have not progressed. For 16 people, symptoms improved by an average of one point on their disability scale after the transplant, and the improvements lasted for an average of two years.