Presentation on theme: "Stem Cell Dream: From Reality to Dreams. EuroStemCell is a unique partnership of European scientists, clinicians, ethicists, social scientists and science."— Presentation transcript:
Stem Cell Dream: From Reality to Dreams
EuroStemCell is a unique partnership of European scientists, clinicians, ethicists, social scientists and science communicators. We provide accessible, independent information and road-tested educational resources on stem cells and their impact on society. We are developing our website into a dynamic and multilingual hub for information, education and discussion on stem cells and regenartive medicine.
Stem Cell Dream: From Reality to Dreams Our aims: Address the need for direct public engagement between our project and its target audiences Promote active relationships between research and European citizens Ensure that the information and resources are accurate
February 2010 The medical potential of reprogrammed iPS stem cells that do not require the destruction of embryos has been exaggerated, according to Dr. Thomas Okarma, CEO Geron Corporation, one of the world’s leading regenerative medicine companies. iPS cells are made by genetically manipulating adult skin cells to give them the versatile properties of embryonic stem (ES) cells. They have caused excitement because they might provide a limitless source of replacement tissue for treating conditions such as spinal paralysis, Parkinson’s disease and diabetes without the need to destroy embryos. As iPS cells could be grown from a patient’s own tissue they would be genetically matched, therefore minimising the risk of rejection by the immune system. However, the need to produce fresh IPS cells for every patient would make it uneconomical. Regulatory issues will create further problems; every new set of cells for each patient would have to be approved independently. The product, whether it’s iPS or ES, has to be scaleable. Okarma told The Times that while induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells will be extremely useful in research, they are unlikely to be suitable for transplanting to patients to treat disease.
Stem Cell Dream: From Reality to Dreams Please note: This story is ficticious. If the contents resembles real persons or companies it is purely coincidental. Lifebank Therapeutics (LT) is a company ready to use induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell technology to treat patients with Huntington’s disease, LT have filed an application to begin Phase I clinical studies.. If approved by the regulatory authorities, this will be the first clinical study of its kind in the world, and, if successful, opens the door to iPS ‐ based stem cell therapies being available to patients in just five years. Huntington’s disease is a progressive genetic neurodegenerative disease that results in severe physical disability, and often other debilitating effects, such as depression. Researchers at LT have taken some skin cells from 10 Huntington’s patients. Using a special technique these skin cells have been reprogrammed and now have embryonic stem cell properties – the cells are called induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells and have the ability to make copies of themselves and can become any type of cell in the body. Researchers have used these iPS cells to develop neural cells.
If the clinical trial is approved, LT will transplant these neural cells directly into the brain of the 10 patients involved in the first study. The study will assess the safety of the treatment, safe dosage and identify side effects. John Know, Chief Scientific Officer of LT, is confident that their clinical study will be given the go ahead. He said: ‘Because iPS cells are derived from a patients own skin, there are no ethical or rejection issues. Our clinical study will pave the way for more widespread applications of iPS cells in treatment of neurological disorders.’ Professor of Neurobiology, Emily Smith at the University of ---, views Lifebank Therapeutics’ plans with scepticism and cautions against premature use of stem cells on patients. ‘There is still so much to be learnt about stem cells and iPS technology before safe and effective treatments can be developed. At the moment we cannot be sure the injected cells would not become cancerous. I am concerned about the wellbeing of the patients involved, and also worried that rushing to the clinic now may seriously damage prospects for future clinical trials’. Stem Cell Dream: From Reality to Dreams Please note: This story is ficticious. If the contents resembles real persons or companies it is purely coincidental.
Stem Cell Dream: From Reality to Dreams Statements: Green = Yes, Red = No, White = Not Sure 1.I think stem cells are dangerous for patients – Yes, No, Not Sure 2.I think embryonic stem cells have more potential to treat disease than iPS cells – Yes, No, Not Sure 3.I am in favour of a clinical trial using iPS cells to treat Parkinson’s disease – Yes, No, Not Sure