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Lung regeneration closer to reality with new discovery by Weill Cornell Medical College researchers
Date:10/28/2011

fessor of bioengineering at Hofstra University and adjunct associate professor of genetic medicine and bioengineering in medicine at Weill Cornell.

The researchers will next determine if MMP14 and other as-yet unrecognized angiocrine factors are responsible for lung regeneration in humans as well as mice. "We believe the same process goes on in humans, although we have no direct evidence yet," says Dr. Ding. The study's authors theorize that patients with COPD (a disorder most often caused by chronic smoking) have so much damage to their lung endothelial cells that they no longer produce the proper inductive signals. "We know smoking damages lungs, but lungs may continue to regenerate alveoli," says Dr. Koji Shido, a co-author of this study. "But at certain point, significant injury to the endothelial cells could impair their capacity to support lung regeneration."

"Perhaps replacement of angiocrine factors, or transplantation of normal lung endothelial cells derived from pluripotent stem cells, could restore lung regeneration" speculates Dr. Zev Rosenwaks, who is the director of the Ronald O. Perelman and Claudia Cohen Center for Reproductive Medicine at Weill Cornell, and a co-author of this study. "Currently, we are generating pluripotent stem cells derived from patients with genetic pulmonary disorders to identify potential pathways, which may ultimately enhance our understanding of how lung endothelial cells may improve lung function in these patients."


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Contact: John Rodgers
jdr2001@med.cornell.edu
212-821-0560
New York- Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center/Weill Cornell Medical College
Source:Eurekalert

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