News ArchivesRead News
’Engineered’ Stem Cells May Help Treat Parkinson’s
Thursday December 22, 2005
12/15/05(Forbes) - Engineered human progenitor brain stem cells are able to produce and deliver into the brain a growth factor that shows promise in treating Parkinson’s disease, say researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
A major challenge in treating Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative brain disorders is getting drugs to the desired areas of the brain. The brain’s structure effectively blocks the delivery of most drugs via the bloodstream. The engineered progenitor brain cells are designed to sneak drugs past the blood-brain barrier.
The University of Wisconsin team obtained and grew large numbers of progenitor cells from human fetal brain tissue and engineered those cells to produce the growth factor called glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF).
Some small clinical trials showed that GDNF provide relief from the debilitating symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. However, GDNF could not cross the blood-brain barrier and had to be pumped directly into the brains of Parkinson’s patients in order to work.
In this latest study, researchers transplanted the engineered progenitor cells into the brains of rats and monkeys. The cells effectively integrated into the brains of the animals and delivered GDNF to the targeted brain areas.
The findings were published in the Dec. 15 issue of the journal Gene Therapy.
"This work shows that stem cells can be used as drug delivery vehicles in the brain," University of Wisconsin-Madison neuroscientist Clive Svendson said in a prepared statement.
Recent NewsJan 2 - January 2, 2018 News Update
Dec 26 - December 26, 2017 News Update
Dec 19 - December 19, 2017 News Update
Dec 8 - New technique scours the genome for genes that combat disease
Dec 8 - Restless sleep may be an early sign of Parkinson's, dementia
Dec 1 - Defects in cell's 'waste disposal system' linked to Parkinson's
Dec 1 - Dual virtual reality/treadmill exercises promote brain plasticity in Parkinson's patients
Nov 17 - 'Moving Day' participant is not letting young-onset Parkinson's disease stop him
Nov 17 - Focused ultrasound shows promise for treating Parkinson's tremor
Nov 17 - New research to target air pollution as a potential trigger for Parkinson’s
Nov 17 - This device will let you feel what it's like to suffer from Parkinson's
Nov 10 - How does Parkinson's disease influence depression?
Nov 10 - House votes to repeal ObamaCare's Medicare cost-cutting board
Nov 10 - Microsoft shows off watch that quiets Parkinson's tremors
Nov 3 - Utah group battling Parkinson's disease with boxing
Nov 3 - UVA-LED STUDY EXAMINES POTENTIAL OF SOUND WAVES TO MANAGE PARKINSON’S DISEASE
Oct 27 - Herbicide's link to Parkinson's disease
Oct 27 - NTU Singapore, KAIST scientists discover new mechanism that causes Parkinsonian symptoms
Oct 27 - 70,000 Washingtonians face higher insurance costs after Trump order, officials say
Oct 18 - Brain disconnections may contribute to Parkinson's hallucinations