A Parkinson’s patient regains function after a programmed cell transplant


A Parkinson patient, 69, was able to tie his shoes, swim and ride a bike again, after implanting skin cells programmed to produce “dopamine” in his brain. And experimental treatment began about two years ago, and the patient funded part of it, and the researchers used the skin cells of the same man to produce neurons that secrete “dopamine”. The use of the patient’s cells greatly reduces the chances that the immune system will reject them.

It is reported that Parkinson’s disease is a chronic disease that worsens with time and affects millions around the world. And causes involuntary shivering, and problems walking and talking, due to damage to brain cells producing “dopamine.”

The researchers say that the programmed skin cells that were implanted in the hemispheres in surgery by a difference of six months, continued to produce the “dopamine” necessary to relieve the symptoms of Parkinson’s.

Dr. Kwang Soo Kim, chief researcher and director of the Molecular Neurobiology Laboratory at McLean Hospital in Massachusetts, told Reuters that no side effects had been observed for the treatment, and that the reuse of the patient’s own cells allowed a “solution to the rejection problem” from Side of the immune system.

The treatment reduced the time that the patient’s medication failed to control symptoms to less than an hour a day, from an average of three hours before the transplantation of the programmed cells. It also allowed a small reduction in the dose of his medications.

“The neurons stay alive and continue to function,” Kim said. The patient, a doctor and businessman, gave $ 2 million to help speed up the research. The US National Institutes of Health provided additional funding.

The research team stressed that these results came from one patient; But team member Dr. Geoffrey Schweitzer of the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston described the results in a press release as “very encouraging”. In total, about four million cells were cultured in three regions of the brain related to movement. The toughest question, Kim said, is whether additional cell culture would allow the patient to get enough “dopamine”. He added, “We hope that he will continue to improve, and we can reduce his medication further.”


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