About Us  |  Contact Us  |  Español
VNA of Care New England
VNA of Care New England

Scientists Use Stem Cells to Grow Human Corneas in Mice

New method of gathering rare limbal stem cells may help those with vision damage, researchers say
WEDNESDAY, July 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A new method of enhancing the re-growth of corneal tissue to restore vision offers possible promise to people whose corneas have been damaged by disease, burns or chemicals, researchers report.
The scientists focused on limbal stem cells, which help maintain and regenerate corneal tissue. The loss of limbal stem cells due to disease or injury is one of the leading causes of blindness.
Tissue or cell transplants have been used to help the cornea regenerate. But the results weren't consistent because it wasn't known if any or how many limbal stem cells were in the transplanted tissue or cells, the study authors noted.
For this study, the investigators used a molecule called ABCB5, which is a "marker" -- or sign -- for the hard-to-detect limbal stem cells. Using this method, they zeroed in on limbal stem cells from human donors and used the stem cells to re-grow anatomically correct and fully functional human corneas in mice.
The research is published in the July 2 issue of the journal Nature.
"Limbal stem cells are very rare, and successful transplants are dependent on these rare cells," study co-author Bruce Ksander, of the Massachusetts Eye and Ear/Schepens Eye Research Institute, said in an institute news release.
More information
The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about corneal disorders (http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/cornealdisorders.html ).
SOURCE: Massachusetts Eye and Ear/Schepens Eye Research Institute, news release, July 2, 2014
Health Headlines
Health Tip: Easing Hand EczemaView in a lightbox
Best to Be Honest About Your Relationship With Your BossView in a lightbox
Health Tip: Monitor Your Child's Fat and Cholesterol ConsumptionView in a lightbox
Holiday Eating Tips for People With DiabetesView in a lightbox
How to Help Someone Grieving in the Holiday SeasonView in a lightbox
VNA of Care New England
© 2011 Site Index | Disclaimer | Legal Notices | Talks Your Health