New Liver Without Transplant, from Bone Marrow Stem Cells

by Raghuram on  September 28, 2007 at 1:42 PM Organ Donation News   - G J E 4
New Liver Without Transplant, from Bone Marrow Stem Cells
There's finally some hope for patients across the globe needing an urgent liver transplant but are unable to find a compatible donor organ.

Scientists have, for the first time, found that stem cells, taken from the patients' bone marrow and injected into the diseased liver, can keep them alive until donor organs become available. Miraculously, the cells can also support liver function, until the organ is able to regenerate itself, eliminating the need for a transplant at all.

The demand for liver donors is very high and many patients die waiting for one or are taken off because their condition deteriorates to the extent that they would not survive the operation when their turn finally arrives. A longstanding goal in hepatology has been to achieve suppression of liver cell death until regeneration could occur.

In a series of animal studies, Massachusetts General Hospital researchers successfully treated rats with liver diseases by manipulating their immune response. If this procedure can be repeated in humans, it could potentially reduce the number of donor organs used in urgent transplant procedures, thereby increasing the number available for the patients on waiting lists.

For example in India, 15,000 people require a liver transplant every year. Shockingly, only 150 get lucky. India requires 22,000 donors annually. Doctors say they get only 50 donors a year.

Eminent liver transplant specialist Dr A K Soin from Sir Gangaram Hospital said, "This therapy can be promising for patients with acute liver failure in whom the effect of liver failure can prove fatal before the patient's liver has had a chance to regenerate.

The technique can be an important bridge to liver recovery. If it can support liver function for a few weeks, then it will give time for the patient's liver to regenerate."

The researchers used mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) — cells from the bone marrow that develop into tissues supporting blood cell development in the marrow cavity. Previous research has shown that mesenchymal stem cells are able to inhibit several immune system activities, apparently by putting a break on the movement of immune cells to areas of damage.

The researchers tested several ways of using the cells to treat rats with liver failure. Simply transplanting mesenchymal stem cells into the animals' livers did not work.

Two subsequent methods of delivering molecules secreted by cells lessened inflammation within the liver and halted cell death.

Source: Medindia

Post your Comments

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
User Avatar
* Your comment can be maximum of 2500 characters
Notify me when reply is posted I agree to the terms and conditions
guest Monday, June 9, 2008
cost involved and how many case you treated for liver
guest Friday, April 17, 2009
I need to learn more about your method of liver transplant if someone do not have a doner. Also advise the cost involved and the timing to wait.
guest Saturday, June 7, 2008

You May Also Like

View All