Retina could be repair and restore by stem cell therapy

Presently stem cell transplantation is getting huge popularity for restoring sight. Scientists from the University of Louisville claimed that they have find that by successfully generating new cells in retina, stem cells can restore damage retinal tissue.

The retina is a multi-layered sensory tissue that lines the back of the eye. It contains millions of photoreceptors that capture light rays and convert them into electrical impulses.  These impulses travel along the optic nerve to the brain where they are turned into images.

The findings are an important step toward helping people who experience vision loss and blindness as a result of age-related macular degeneration and hereditary retinal degeneration.

In the study researchers discovered that stem cells removed from bone marrow were attracted to damaged retinal pigment epithelium, the pigmented cell layer just outside the retina.

The University reported that the successful result of the study is definitely a ray of hope for people who are blind or already faced blindness due to macular degeneration  and hereditary retinal degeneration

According to researcher Suzanne Ildstad, more research is required to optimize the outcome and potential repair of damaged retinal pigment epithelium.

Researchers believe that this same technique that could cure optical defects, would be useful to treat congestive heart failure, diabetes, osteoporosis, Alzheimer, Parkinson diseases and spinal cord injuries.

Source: Stem Cell Research Blog


One Response to “Retina could be repair and restore by stem cell therapy”

  1. Joe Hutchinson Says:

    Is America behind in stem cell research? We’re theorizing and using mice while the AUSTRALIAN’s are curing people.

    A friend just forwarded this to me. The video is worth watching. Our vets wounded in war should especially get this message. I just hope we don’t have to go to Australia to get it. Follow-up definitely worth pursuing and passing on. []

    Here’s part of an article that names the involved people and institutions:

    Stem cells used to restore sight for corneal disease sufferers
    Leigh Dayton, Science writer | May 28, 2009
    Article from: The Australian

    THREE Australians have had their sight restored thanks to their own stem cells and ordinary contact lenses.

    Although the novel technique was used to reverse blinding corneal disease, it promises to be a quick, painless and cheap treatment for other visual disorders. It may even be useful for repairing damaged skin, the researchers reported today in the journal Transplantation.

    The team leader, UNSW stem cell scientist Nick Di Girolamo said: We’re quietly excited. We don’t know yet if (the correction) will remain stable, but if it does it’s a wonderful technique.

    According to team member Stephanie Watson- an opthalmic surgeon with Sydney’s Prince of Wales Hospital- two of the three patients were legally blind in the treated eye; they can now read big letters on the eye chart. The third could read the top few rows of the chart but is now able to pass the vision test for a driving license.

Leave a Reply

Protected by Comment Guard Pro