Researchers have identified a way to enhance regrowth of human corneal tissue to restore vision, using a molecule that acts as a marker for hard-to-find limbal stem cells.
This work, a collaboration among the Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts Eye and Ear/Schepens Eye Research Institute, Boston Children’s Hospital, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and the VA Boston Healthcare System, holds promise for burn patients, victims of chemical injury, and others with damaging eye diseases.
The research, published this week in the journal Nature,is also one of the first examples of constructing a tissue from an adult-derived human stem cell.
Limbal stem cells reside in the eye’s
Ashok Chakravarti remembers the moment he went blind.
It was on February 18, 2002. He was at work, at a chemical plant, when a pipe carrying sodium hydroxide (caustic soda) started to leak.
“I was fixing the leak when the chemical splashed into my eyes,” he says. The accident damaged the outermost layer of his eyes, the cornea.
Chakravarti is among thousands of Indians who lose their sight in chemical accidents each year.
Today, some of those people can see again, thanks to scientists at the L.V. Prasad Eye Institute, in Hyderabad.
The institute is treating patients with stem cells – not the controversial
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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.
“This is a roaring success,” said ophthalmologist Dr. Ivan Schwab of the University of California, Davis, who
A new cornea may be the only way to prevent a patient going blind – but there is a shortage of donated corneas and the queue for transplantation is long. Scientists at the Sahlgrenska Academy have for the first time successfully cultivated stem cells on human corneas, which may in the long term remove the need for donators.
Approximately 500 corneal transplantations are carried out each year in Sweden, and about 100,000 in the world. The damaged and cloudy cornea that is turning the patient blind is replaced with a healthy, transparent one. But the procedure requires a donated cornea,
A have-a-go hero who was blinded in one eye in a chemical attack 15 years ago has miraculously got his sight back after undergoing pioneering stem cell treatment.
Russell Turnbull is one of eight patients with impaired vision who have been treated successfully with their own stem cells, in a technique developed by scientists and eye surgeons at the North East England Stem Cell Institute.
Mr Turnbull was hit in his right eye, causing massive damage to the cornea stem cells, leaving him with severely impaired vision, a condition known as Limbal Stem Cell Deficiency (LSCD) (…)