Mesenchymal stem cells reverse tissue damage in mouse model of asthma
Asthma affects approximately 300 million people worldwide. While symptoms can often be managed with B-agonists and corticosteroids, some patients with severe asthma do not respond to treatment. Chronic and/or severe asthma often leads to structural changes in the lungs and bronchi known as airway remodelling. These changes contribute to airway dysfunction. In a new study, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) were administered to mice with asthma, either nasally or intravenously, to try and combat airway remodelling. MSCs are multipotent cells that can differentiate into a number of different tissues or lineages, including bone, cartilage and muscle. They were originally found in the bone marrow, but the cells in this study were produced from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC), which could be a more reliable source of MSCs if and when the treatment is developed for clinical trials and treatment of patients. Mice treated with the MSCs had reduced thickness of the epithelia and smooth muscle hyperplasia (resulting in more open airways) and less inflammation and fibrosis .
If you are interested in gene and cell therapy for asthma and other allergy related disease, we also have blog post coming out soon on this topic, so do check back.
Original article: http://www.fasebj.org/content/early/2017/06/16/fj.201700178R.long
Press release for a general audience: https://medicalxpress.com/news/2017-06-trials-unique-stem-cells-potential.html