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Stem cells reverse blindness caused by burns

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posted on Jun, 23 2010 @ 07:55 PM

LOS ANGELES – Dozens of people who were blinded or otherwise suffered severe eye damage when they were splashed with caustic chemicals had their sight restored with transplants of their own stem cells — a stunning success for the burgeoning cell-therapy field, Italian researchers reported Wednesday.

The treatment worked completely in 82 of 107 eyes and partially in 14 others, with benefits lasting up to a decade so far. One man whose eyes were severely damaged more than 60 years ago now has near-normal vision.

The approach would not help people with damage to the optic nerve or macular degeneration, which involves the retina. Nor would it work in people who are completely blind in both eyes, because doctors need at least some healthy tissue that they can transplant.

In the study, published online by the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers took a small number of stem cells from a patient's healthy eye, multiplied them in the lab and placed them into the burned eye, where they were able to grow new corneal tissue to replace what had been damaged. Since the stem cells are from their own bodies, the patients do not need to take anti-rejection drugs.

This is a pretty amazing! Imagine when they will be able to cure all types of blindness.

I wonder what the next big break thru involving stem cells will be? It's looking like its only a matter of time until almost everything known today is cured.

posted on Jun, 23 2010 @ 08:11 PM
This is great news. I dont see how anyone could be against the use of stem cells. Its not like your substituting life.

posted on Jun, 23 2010 @ 08:12 PM
I am glad the ban on stem cell research ended in 2009. I would have preferred sooner, but backwardness got in the way. The future of medicine and healing looks like it is going to be very bright. I'm actually looking forward to the future of medicine.

posted on Jun, 23 2010 @ 08:15 PM
I am just disappointed that they didnt ban ignorance yet !

great article, thanks

posted on Jun, 23 2010 @ 08:16 PM
This is wonderful news for a change! Stem cell technology is a miracle, especially to these people who have regained their sight. Thanks for the lift.

posted on Jun, 23 2010 @ 08:37 PM
Wow, this is just amazing.
It's very nice to see some positive news amongst all the negative.
I can not wait to see what the future holds in this area of science.

posted on Jun, 23 2010 @ 09:03 PM
well glad to see this has been tested and claiming to be coming out as a new result, was it just me or did anyone else catch "with benefits lasting up to a decade so far."
which means these results and the procedure was done 10 years ago. More stuff being released to take our attention away from what is really happening in the world.

posted on Jun, 23 2010 @ 10:08 PM
If anyone cares to look into this subject, they will learn that all of the successful treatments using stem cells are from ADULT stem cells (ASC). The experiments using embryonic stem cells are horror stories of failure because there is no way to predict how these cells will grow, and into which organs they might become. This is the reason people are saving and freezing their children's umbilical cords in case they need them later in life.

The media are so fixated on destroying embryos they never distinguish the difference, and people automatically think of ESC because most have not heard of using ASC.

We are all former embryos!

posted on Jun, 23 2010 @ 10:54 PM
reply to post by Starbug3MY

Well said.

There has never been a ban on Adult stem cells. The media as usual reports this as if all stem cell research is great. Well its not. Adult stem cells are treating/curing over 70s diseases and doing great things as reported in the article. Embryonic stem cells however have yet to even nominally treat one. Its a billion dollar tax payer funded pipe dream.

So when the MSM reports huge news on how stem cells are improving the lives of us all be sure to get to the facts straight before cheering for an ethically and politically charged scientific failure.

On the lighter side its great news thanks for the lab scientist still curing people.

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