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Umbilical cord blood cell therapy may reduce signs and symptoms of Alzheimer's disease
Date:3/26/2008

Tampa, FL (March 26, 2008) Targeted immune suppression using human umbilical cord blood cells may improve the pathology associated with Alzheimers disease, a new study in a mouse model of this currently untreatable neurodegenerative condition reports. The study, led by researchers at the University of South Florida, is published online in the peer-reviewed journal Stem Cells and Development (www.liebertpub.com/scd).

Following a series of low-dose infusions of human umbilical cord blood cells into mice with Alzheimers-like disease, the amount of amyloid- and -amyloid plaques -- hallmarks of Alzheimers pathology in the brain -- was reduced 62 percent. Amyloid- induces an inflammatory response in the brain associated with the interaction of CD40 and CD40L, two pro-inflammatory molecules. Researchers also reported an astonishing 86-percent improvement in cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA), another hallmark of Alzheimers disease. CAA compromises the integrity of the blood-brain barrier, disrupting normal trafficking of various molecules and cells from and to the brain and is believed to be the main culprit for the brain inflammation observed in Alzheimers.

Human umbilical cord blood cell therapy appeared to suppress CD40-CD40L activity, suggesting that this therapeutic approach offers the potential to target the pathogenic inflammatory response that contributes to Alzheimers disease and other degenerative conditions.

Jun Tan, PhD, MD, and colleagues from USF (Tampa), Yale University (New Haven, CT), Cedars-Sinai Medical Center (Los Angeles, CA), Saneron CCEL Therapeutics (Tampa, FL), and Saitama Medical School (Japan), concluded that human umbilical cord blood cell-induced disruption of the CD40-CD40L interaction may alleviate the key pathologic changes in the brain associated with Alzheimers disease.

It has been well documented that altered immune functioning, characterized by the p
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Contact: Anne DeLotto Baier
abaier@health.usf.edu
813-974-3300
University of South Florida Health
Source:Eurekalert

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