Sunday, March 25, 2007

ABC News mentions cardiac treatment using adult stem cells

On Sunday, March 25, 2007, Timothy Johnson reported on ABC Evening News initial research results on the use of adult stem cells to treat cardiac patients. The stem cells were derived from the patient who was treated, so there no immune issues due to a difference between patient and stem cell source. I believe the stem cells were injected into the heart. When asked when this might be available clinically, Johnson responded 3-5 years. I have not yet found a transcript of this report on the ABC website. There is a video available, under the title "Stem Cells Yield Heart Hope. A Study Shows Adult Stem Cells, Not Embryos, Could Help Treat Heart Damage." The URL for the video is

I found a different report on genetic engineering news: congratulates Osiris Therapeutics for promising data reported today [3/25/07] using the PROVACEL(TM), adult mesenchymal stem cell product for treatment of post myocardial infarction patients. The data, which was presented by Joshua Hare M.D. at the American College of Cardiology's Innovation in Intervention: i2 Summit, overviewed six month follow-up of 53-patients treated in a double-blind placebo-controlled manner with intravenous administration of allogeneic stem cells. Reported results included "significantly lower rates of adverse events, such as cardiac arrhythmias, as well as significant improvements in heart, lung and overall condition."

"To our knowledge, this is the first placebo-controlled clinical trial utilizing allogeneic stem cells administered intravenously in cardiac patients," said Dr. Zhoahui Zhong, Chairman of "The fundamental importance of the data reported today resides in two fundamental differences between this trial and numerous other stem cell cardiology trials. The first being that the cells were administered intravenously, thus implying that direct myocardial injection of stem cells, which is a relatively invasive procedure may not be strictly necessary. The second being that the cells were derived from a standardized off the shelf, allogeneic source, thus the procedure did not require patients to undergo bone marrow aspiration, yet another procedure associated with a certain degree of invasiveness."

***As an aside

The link to the ABC video was part of the initial post, but somehow was not included by blogger, which has been behaving erratically, especially as to the "gotcha" letters. Also, of earlier comments by others about how New Jersey politicians are tricking/duping Jerseyans by using more of the $5 million for research on adult stem cells than on embryonic stem cells, the ABC report is evidence that ACTUAL treatments for people are more apt to come from adult stem cell work BEFORE they come from embryonic stem cell work. Those people who are concerned about TREATMENTS, as distinct from useful diagnostic methods (eg, in genetic screening), should heed this well.

***See also

Heart Attack Patients Benefit from Novel Stem Cell Therapy

Rush principal investigator cardiologist Dr. Gary Schaer, head of the Rush Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory, says one reason the study results are so promising is that these stem cells can be used without tissue typing and do not trigger an immune response, and are available for every patient.

The mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) are found in the adult bone marrow and have the potential to develop into mature heart cells and new blood vessels. The MSC cells are derived from normal, healthy adult volunteer bone marrow donors and are not derived from a fetus, embryo or animal. Because they are in an early stage of development, it is believed that they do not trigger an immune response when placed in someone else's body.

Schaer says the cells were grown in culture to very high numbers, allowing a single donor's cells to treat thousands of patients. "The cells have the ability to expand, or multiply, under controlled conditions, and the expanded cells have the ability to develop into different types of cells in the appropriate environment. One donation can produce billions of MSCs. The cells can be stored for years in a frozen state, ready to be used when they are needed."


Blogger bob said...

Answer to an aside:
You may be on to something! You are right, if we don't do any hesc research we won't make any advances with it. The opposition is not only the well oiled pro-life lobby, but maybe adult stem cell researchers worried if advances come from hesc, they might find it hard to compete for grants. Pointing out that adult stem cells can work for a specific condition does not mean it can cure all conditions and we should not take that to mean hesc is not necessary. If we never studied internal combustion you would still be travelling on a horse. Who knows, given the same mentality, we might still be under the assumption the earth is flat.

6:23 AM  
Blogger Thomas said...

You may be interested in the stem cell therapy success of places like Cellmedicine for treatment of heart failure. There is a good video that they put up on youtube about this at

may be of interest.

11:52 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home