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Study shows promise of preserving fertility in boys with cancer
Date:3/27/2014

acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) cells, a common type of childhood cancer. Previous research had shown that up to 30 percent of boys with ALL had cancer cells in their testicular tissue.

Several earlier studies have attempted to eliminate cancer cells from biopsy tissue, but they showed contradictory results. The approach of Sadri-Ardekani and colleagues was to investigate whether cancer cells would survive the laboratory protocol they had developed to reproduce SSCs from a small tissue biopsy. This process multiplies the original SSCs by 18,000-fold so there are enough cells to transplant back into the patient when he reaches adulthood.

For the research, ALL cells were taken from three patients' bone marrow. The team then put the ALL cells alone, and ALL cells combined with testicular cells, through the cell-reproduction process.

Even when ALL cells made up 40 percent of the cell mixture being cultured, they were entirely eliminated in 26 days of culture.

"This pilot study showed that the culture system not only allowed for efficient propagation of sperm stem cells, but also eliminated ALL cells," said Sadri-Ardekani.

SSC transplantation has not yet been attempted in humans, but has been performed successfully in several species of animals, including monkeys, said Sadri-Ardekani. He noted that before physicians and scientists begin offering SSC transplantation in patients, additional research will be needed, including whether other types of leukemia cells will also be eliminated in the cell-propagation process.


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Contact: Karen Richardson
336-716-4453
Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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