Navigation Links
Grant initiates new stem cell research for patients suffering with corneal blindness
Date:6/21/2013

LOS ANGELES (June 21, 2013) Corneal blindness affects roughly 8 million people worldwide, and traditional treatments and surgical interventions have seen little long-term success. With a new vision for stem cell corneal transplantation, and a $1.25 million grant from the National Eye Institute, Cedars-Sinai co-investigators Alexander V. Ljubimov, PhD, FARVO, and Clive Svendsen, PhD, hope to treat previously untreatable patients suffering with corneal blindness.

"Our proposed and first-of-a-kind research deals with collecting human eye cells, reprograming them back in time to a stem cell state and then using them to create a corneal cell source for transplantation. If successful, this could result in future human clinical trials that may lead to improved vision and overall quality of life," said Ljubimov, principal investigator of the grant and director of the Eye Program at the Cedars-Sinai Regenerative Medicine Institute. "We are first experimenting with allogeneic cells from eye donors, but hope to use person's own cells in the near future."

A common cause of corneal blindness is limbal epithelial stem cell deficiency, which means that a patient's history of genetics or eye injuries results in corneal scarring, blood vessel growth, and outgrowth of conjunctiva, all of which lead to vision loss.

This stem cell therapy approach uses induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC), which are adult cells that are genetically reprogrammed to function as embryonic stem cells. Typically, iPSC technology has used stem cells from other places in the patient's body, such as the skin, or from donor cells. However, advances in stem cell technology could make it possible for doctors to harvest stem cells from a patient's own cornea or sclera (the white of the eye) and then transplant the reprogrammed cells back into the cornea of the patient.

"If successful, this new approach may pave the way for human trials in patients affected by limbal epithelial stem cell deficiency," said Svendsen, director of the Cedars-Sinai Regenerative Medicine Institute. "The engineering of a patient's own adult stem cells to embryonic stem-like cells for the use in corneal transplantation may provide a noteworthy treatment alternative to patients affected worldwide."

Svendsen and Ljubimov lead a highly respected research team that includes Mehrnoosh Saghizadeh, PhD, co-investigator of the grant and assistant professor of surgery; Yaron Rabinowitz, MD, director of Ophthalmology Research and co-investigator of the grant; and Dhruv Sareen, PhD, director of the Regenerative Medicine Institute's iPSC core facility.

The research project grant is the first NIH R01 grant awarded to the newly established Cedars-Sinai Regenerative Medicine Institute and was given under the application "Stem Cell Approaches to Developing New Therapies for Ocular Diseases."

This grant aims to restore function in diseased eye tissues through the revitalization of existing cells or the transplantation of new cells. The National Eye Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, leads the federal government's research on the visual system and eye diseases and supports basic and clinical science programs that result in the development of sight-saving treatments.


'/>"/>

Contact: Cara Lasala
cara.lasala@cshs.org
310-423-7798
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Scientist awarded $1 million grant to develop tools for hepatitis C treatment discovery
2. Washingtons Life Sciences Discovery Fund awards commercialization grants
3. University of Cincinnati researchers win $3.7M grant from US Department of Defense
4. $9 million grant awarded to UH to study, treat learning disabilities
5. Louisiana Tech University professor earns NSF Early Career Development grant
6. Moffitt researcher awarded GE grant to develop tool to detect breast cancer metastasis genetic risks
7. Grant awarded to help improve problem-solving skills for deaf and hard-of-hearing students
8. 2 Grand Challenges Explorations grants for global health
9. Clemson professor awarded nearly $600,000 4-year grant to study language of plants
10. LA BioMed receives Grand Challenges Explorations grant
11. UC San Diego Superfund Research Program receives $15 million grant renewal
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... First Choice Emergency Room , the largest network of independent freestanding ... of its new Mesquite-Samuell Farm facility. , “We are pleased to announce Dr. ... James M. Muzzarelli, Executive Medical Director of First Choice Emergency Room. , Dr. ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... recover from injury. Recently, he has implemented orthobiologic procedures as a method for ... is one of the first doctors to perform the treatment. Orthobiologics are substances ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... Conventional wisdom preaches the benefits of moderation, whether it’s a matter of indulgence ... high can result in disappointment, perhaps even self-loathing. However, those who set the bar ... from PsychTests.com reveals that behind the tendency to set low expectations is ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... Those who have experienced traumatic events may suffer from a complex set of ... or alcohol abuse, as a coping mechanism. To avoid this pain and suffering, Serenity ... event. , Trauma sufferers tend to feel a range of emotions, from depression, guilt, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... in a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. Prone to extreme mood ... something upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. “If there was a ... children and say he was going to kill them. If we were driving on ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... -- According to a new market research ... Safety Pen Needles), Needle Length (4mm, 5mm, 6mm, 8mm, ... Purchase (Retail, Non-Retail) - Trends & Global Forecasts to ... for the forecast period of 2016 to 2021. This ... 2021 from USD 1.65 Billion in 2016, growing at ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Arkis BioSciences, ... less invasive and more durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, ... funding.  The Series-A funding is led by Innova ... Fund, and other private investors.  Arkis, new financing ... instrumentation and the market release of its in-licensed ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Any dentist who has made an ... current process. Many of them do not even offer this ... and high laboratory costs involved. And those who ARE able ... such a high cost that the majority of today,s patients ... Parsa Zadeh , founder of Dental Evolutions Inc. and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: