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To: wagglebee
A few months back, my mother’s ophthalmologist told her that there would soon be a cure for her macular degeneration, using umbilical cord stem cells, not embryonic stem cells (which he is against using).

He told her...come back in 6 months and we might have some good news.

Mom thought he was being overly optimistic.

I’m glad to read about the current successes.

13 posted on 06/06/2007 4:12:53 AM PDT by syriacus ("...had the US troops remained [in S. Korea in 1949], there would have been no [Korean] War")
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To: syriacus
Umbilical Cord Tissue Shows Promise as Retinal Disease Treatment

By Ben A. Shaberman 05/30/2007

The umbilical cord is not only the lifeline for a developing baby, but it might also save sight for people affected by a variety of retinal degenerative diseases.

Because the umbilical cord is normally discarded after birth, use of the tissue derived from it doesn’t raise ethical concerns.

FFB-funded investigator Ray Lund, Ph.D., Oregon Health and Science University, in collaboration with Centocor, a biomedicine company, used human umbilical cord tissue (hUTC) to rescue vision in a rodent model of retinal degenerative disease.

In a paper published in the March 1, 2007 issue of Stem Cells, the investigative team reported that “hUTC may provide utility in treating patients with retinal degenerations such as retinitis pigmentosa.

The research team also evaluated mesenchymal (bone marrow) and placental cells for retinal rescue. Mesenchymal cells were somewhat effective, but Lund says they are more difficult to expand and produce than hUTC. Placental cells had little effect.

This study is one of many recent cell-based investigations — including the FFB-funded work done by David Gamm, M.D., Ph.D., covered in this issue of InSight — that is enabling experts toidentify optimal treatments for a broad spectrum of retinal degenerative disease. Lund says, “It’s sensible to look at a galaxy of cells…to see ultimately what will be the best for the widest range of diseases.”

One reason that efficacy varies from one cell type to another is that each cell type delivers its own unique mix of factors. The hUTC in Lund’s study express interleukin-6 (IL-6), fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2), and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). The cells used in Gamm’s study expressed a differentcombinationof growth factors.

A number of FFB-funded investigators have made significant progress over the past year in developing cell-based treatments for both rescuing vision in moderate disease and replacing tissue lost to advanced disease,” says Stephen Rose, Ph.D., Chief Research Officer, Foundation Fighting Blindness.

14 posted on 06/06/2007 4:33:18 AM PDT by syriacus ("...had the US troops remained [in S. Korea in 1949], there would have been no [Korean] War")
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To: syriacus

The media almost never mentions the existence or viability of anything other than embryonic stem cells, even though the reality is that these have had zero successes and necessitate the slaughter of the unborn.

All the while, there have been incredible breakthroughs with adult (including umbilical and placental) stem cells. A huge advantage of umbilical and placental stem cells is that there is an continuous and unlimited supply of these and there is absolutely no risk to anyone in the extraction of them.


15 posted on 06/06/2007 4:36:47 AM PDT by wagglebee ("A political party cannot be all things to all people." -- Ronald Reagan, 3/1/75)
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