Stem Cell Research and Therapy

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Stem Cell Therapy In The Treatment Of Neurological Disorders†

- Lifecell Conference at Chennai Jan-2006 byDr. Paul.R.Sanberg

The first International symposium on Stem cell Research and Therapy was conducted in Chennai, on the 6th of January. The programme was organized by LifeCell, a pioneer in stem cell banking in association with Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, one of the reputed medical institutions in the country.

Dr. Mammen Chandy, a leading hematologist, CMC, Vellore, headed the symposium. Dr. Paul. R. Sanberg, Dr. Umesh Banakar, Dr.Michael E.Trigg, Dr. Naynesh Kamani and Dr. Mammen Chandy were amongst the participants of the scientific session. The following is a summary of the lecture on the potential of Stem cell therapy in the treatment of ALS and stroke.†

One of the most striking observations in the study of human physiology is the dependence of human life on the brain, or the master controller. The brain receives approximately 1200 ml of blood/minute and draws nearly 20% of the total energy. A close examination would reveal that the brain actually dictates the behavior of every living cell and tissue of the body.

Amongst the various diseases that can affect the nervous system, stroke is of particular significance as it is the leading cause of adult disability. Approximately, 750,000 episodes of stroke are believed to occur in the USA every year, prompting concerns regarding the financial resources allocated for treatment.†

Parkinsonís disease, Huntingtonís disease, Alzheimerís disease, and and amylopic lateral sclerosis (ALS) represent other neurological disorders for which effective treatment is yet to be developed.†

One promising approach regarding treatment is the administration of drugs or other therapeutic agents, into specific regions of the brain or selective brain cell populations, surpassing or increasing the permeability of the blood brain barrier.

It is now evident that the circulatory system can be used as a route to deliver specific cells (stem cells) to the damaged brain to facilitate repair and recovery. A number of stem cell studies conducted on animal models have demonstrated the functional and structural recovery in animals, designed to mimic human models of CNS injury and disease.

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