Navigation Links
Study using stem cells to improve organ transplantation to receive $12 million

CHICAGO An innovative Northwestern Medicine research program investigating if stem cells may be the key to allowing organ transplant patients to stop taking immunosuppressive drugs has received $12 million in research funding. The grant will allow researchers to finish Phase II of the clinical trials and begin Phase III. Northwestern began the study's clinical trial in early 2009 as part of a partnership with the University of Louisville, which engineers the specialized stem cells used in each transplant procedure.

"During our clinical trials, we have been able to take the novel stem cell technology that the University of Louisville pioneered from the bench to the bedside," said Joseph Leventhal, MD PhD, director of kidney and pancreas transplantation at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, and professor of Surgery at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. "The results of our clinical trial were a catalyst for Novartis' long-term investment in this new cellular based therapy for solid organ transplantation."

The clinical trial uses specially engineered stem cells from kidney donors to make the organ recipient's immune system recognize the new kidney as its own. In mainstream transplant procedures, a recipient faces the danger of their immune system treating a newly transplanted organ as a foreign body that should be removed, causing it to attack and try to kill the new organ. To prevent a recipient's immune system from attacking their new organ, doctors must currently prescribe toxic anti-rejection medicines to weaken the immune system and keep it at bay.

In March of 2012, Leventhal and his colleagues published the study's initial clinical results from eight participants in Science Translational Medicine. The article outlined that of the study's eight participants, five were able to successfully stop taking all anti-rejection medicines in just one year after they received a new kidney, and two required only low-doses of anti-rejection medicine to be maintained instead of a normal regimen. The final patient suffered an unrelated illness that required another kidney transplant to be performed.

"Northwestern's Comprehensive Transplant Center has demonstrated for the first time in the history of organ transplantation that we can safely achieve durable transplantation tolerance in mismatched and unrelated donor/recipient combinations," said Leventhal. "I am very excited to be able to continue this groundbreaking translational research."

The first subjects to participate in the research study underwent surgery on February 26, 2009. To date, more than 20 patients have been enrolled and have received new kidneys as part of the clinical trial, the majority of which have been successfully taken off of all anti-rejection medicines. In order to qualify, the donor and recipient pairs must be blood-type compatible and have a negative cross-match, which means that testing has been done to confirm the recipient does not have antibodies in the blood that would cause rejection of the kidney.

The grant is a result of a license and research collaboration agreement between Regenerex LLC and Novartis to provide access to the novel technology developed by the University of Louisville's Institute for Cellular Therapeutics. Leventhal does not receive financial incentives or payment from Novartis or Regenerex LLC.


Contact: Bret Coons
Northwestern Memorial Hospital

Related medicine news :

1. FDA awards $2.25M grant to study immunosuppresive drug in high-risk patients
2. Study finds that Americans want doctors guidance on genetic test results
3. New study assesses injuries seen in the emergency department to children of teenage parents
4. Study Finds Infants Under 6 Months Too Young for Flu Shot at High Risk to Influenza Fatalities- UV Technologies Makers of UV-Aid, Develop New Flu Prevention Alternative
5. Independent Naturopathic Clinic Receives Groundbreaking Research Grant: Partners with Global Pharmaceutical Company to Study Relief of Cancer Drug Side Effects
6. 20 percent of nations GME funds go to New York while 29 states get less than 1 percent, study says
7. Physician shortage could be cut by new primary care models, study finds
8. Study: Access to health care increases prescription opioid availability and associated abuse
9. Study: Higher rates of diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and stroke found in food desert
10. U-M study: Smarter blood pressure guidelines could prevent many more heart attacks and strokes
11. Study looks at safety, effectiveness of generics for treating depression
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/29/2015)... San Jose, CA (PRWEB) , ... November 29, 2015 , ... ... Bay Area, is proud to announce their December, 2015, featured apartment community: Epic. In ... looking for corporate housing in the tight Bay Area rental market to efficiently find ...
(Date:11/28/2015)... , ... November 28, 2015 , ... Trying to relax ... created the COUCH BUDDY. "I conceived of this design due to personal experience with ... couch users. It promotes relaxation and convenience, as well as increases support. It also ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... , ... November 28, 2015 , ... There is only ... outperform our billings from last year? , This question has not been an easy ... coming to the retirement age and the younger workforce don’t share the same discipline ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... According to an article ... way that they are handling security in light of the recent terrorist attacks in ... an attempt to stop an attack from reaching U.S. soil. Especially around special events ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... An inventor, from ... dispense prescription medications at home, so he invented the patent-pending ELECTRONIC M.D. , ... prescription medications. In doing so, it could help to prevent potential overdose situations. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/27/2015)... 27, 2015 --> ... go online. The potential to save costs, improve treatment ... far from fully exploited as yet. Here, particular emphasis ... either via mobile tablet or directly at the patients, ... ) -->      (Photo: ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... India , November 27, ... --> --> ... personal emergency response system (PERS) ... steadily for 5 years with ... region expected to see a ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... November 26, 2015 --> ... use SyMRI to find optimal contrast weighting of MRI ... and has signed a research agreement with SyntheticMR in order ... Using SyMRI, it is possible to generate multiple contrast images ... the patient has left, thus making it possible to both ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: