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When seen through the lens of technology, few resources are truly scarce; they’re mainly inaccessible. 

 

Peter Diamandis

Stem-Cell Treatment for Blindness Moving Through Patient Testing

RATE THIS! +29
Posted in Science on 21st Apr, 2014 12:15 AM by AlexMuller

A treatment for macular degeneration is close to the next stage of human testing. A noteworthy event for the millions of patients it could help, and for its potential to become the first therapy based on embryonic stem cells. Advanced Cell Technology plans to move its treatment for two forms of vision loss into advanced human trials.

 

The company has already reported that the treatment is safe (see “Eye Study Is a Small but Crucial Advance for Stem-Cell Therapy”), although a full report of the results from the early, safety-focused testing has yet to be published.

 
The planned trials will test whether it is effective. The treatment will be tested both on patients with Stargardt’s disease (an inherited form of progressive vision loss that can affect children) and on those with age-related macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss among people 65 and older.
 
The treatment is based on retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells that have been grown from embryonic stem cells. A surgeon injects 150 microliters of RPE cells, roughly the amount of liquid in three raindrops, under a patient’s retina, which is temporarily detached for the procedure. RPE cells support the retina’s photoreceptors, which are the cells that detect incoming light and pass the information on to the brain.
 
Although complete data from the trials of ACT’s treatments have yet to be published, the company has reported impressive results with one patient, who recovered vision after being deemed legally blind.
 
Now the company plans to publish the data from two clinical trials taking place in the U.S. and the E.U. in a peer-reviewed academic journal. Each of these early-stage trials includes 12 patients affected by either macular degeneration or Stargardt’s disease.

Tags: stem cellseyevisionmacular degenerationblindness

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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-21
+2
Very promising and encouraging. It is indeed long awaited application of stem cell research. We had so many research reports and great expectations, now we should be able to see new cures in the clinic Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-21
+2
Stem cells hold many promises and regenerative medicine is expected to revolutionise many treatments- eye seems to be vey good starting point and will help millions Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-21
+2
Stem cell in combination with 3D printing of entire organs have potential to solve some big and very significant issue. Waiting for organ donors, or in some countries even for blood donors, is a very difficult situations for many patients and rejection of organs remains a problem. New advances in the area of stem cells and 3D printing could offer the best solution Reply


 

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