OSAKA – Japanese researchers report taking their first steps toward possible stem-cell-based treatments for muscular dystrophy.
A Kyoto University team and chemical company Asahi Kasei created skeletal muscle stem cells from induced pluripotent stem cells, or iPS cells. These were injected into a leg of a mouse with muscular dystrophy. In the muscle there, researchers detected a protein that kept muscle mass from deteriorating.
Japan has nearly 30,000 patients with muscular dystrophy.
The team, led by Kyoto University lecturer Hidetoshi Sakurai, says the stem cells fused with impaired muscles and helped regenerate them. This could lead to a therapy to slow the course of the disease. The researchers hope to ensure safety and effectiveness through testing on dogs and are eventually aiming for clinical trials.
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BSc (Hons) Microbiology
Chief Executive Officer | Biovault Family
Biovault Family CEO, Kate Sneddon, joined Biovault in July 2009 and became Chief Executive Officer in 2016. As health industry professional her experience includes working as a microbiologist and leader at GSK for over 10 years. Her expertise in cord blood banking has been recognised in her awards, features in Parliamentary Review and Parents Guide to Cord Blood, as well as contributions to research with UCL and others.