Neurological disease encompasses a diverse group of disorders of the central and peripheral nervous systems, which collectively are the leading cause of disease burden globally. The scope of treatment options for neurological disease is limited, and drug approval rates for improved treatments remain poor when compared with other therapeutic areas. Stem cell therapy provides hope for many patients, but should be tempered with the realisation that the scientific and medical communities are still to fully unravel the complexities of stem cell biology, and to provide satisfactory data that support the rational, evidence-based application of these cells from a therapeutic perspective. We provide an overview of the application of stem cells in neurological disease, starting with basic principles, and extending these to describe the clinical trial landscape and progress made over the last decade. Many forms of stem cell therapy exist, including the use of neural, haematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells. Cell therapies derived from differentiated embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells are also starting to feature prominently. Over 200 clinical studies applying various stem cell approaches to treat neurological disease have been registered to date (Clinicaltrials.gov), the majority of which are for multiple sclerosis, stroke and spinal cord injuries. In total, we identified 17 neurological indications in clinical stage development. Few studies have progressed into large, pivotal investigations with randomised clinical trial designs. Results from such studies will be essential for approval and application as mainstream treatments in the future.
Mesenchymal Stem Cells and Cancer: Clinical Challenges and Opportunities
Stem cell-based therapies exhibit profound therapeutic potential for treating various human diseases, including cancer. Among the cell types that can be used for this purpose, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are considered as promising source of stem cells in personalized cell-based therapies. The inherent tumor-tropic property of MSCs can be used to target cancer cells. Although the impacts of MSCs on tumor progression remain elusive, they have been genetically modified or engineered as targeted anticancer agents which could inhibit tumor growth by blocking different processes of tumor. In addition, there are close interactions between MSCs and cancer stem cells (CSCs). MSCs can regulate the growth of CSCs through paracrine mechanisms. This review aims to focus on the current knowledge about MSCs-based tumor therapies, the opportunities and challenges, as well as the prospective of its further clinical implications.
Stem cells: past, present, and future
In recent years, stem cell therapy has become a very promising and advanced scientific research topic. The development of treatment methods has evoked great expectations. This paper is a review focused on the discovery of different stem cells and the potential therapies based on these cells. The genesis of stem cells is followed by laboratory steps of controlled stem cell culturing and derivation. Quality control and teratoma formation assays are important procedures in assessing the properties of the stem cells tested. Derivation methods and the utilization of culturing media are crucial to set proper environmental conditions for controlled differentiation. Among many types of stem tissue applications, the use of graphene scaffolds and the potential of extracellular vesicle-based therapies require attention due to their versatility. The review is summarized by challenges that stem cell therapy must overcome to be accepted worldwide. A wide variety of possibilities makes this cutting edge therapy a turning point in modern medicine, providing hope for untreatable diseases.
Human embryonic stem cells: Derivation, culture, and differentiation: A review
The greatest therapeutic promise of human embryonic stem cells (hESC) is to generate specialized cells to replace damaged tissue in patients suffering from various degenerative diseases. However, the signaling mechanisms involved in lineage restriction of ESC to adopt various cellular phenotypes are still under investigation. Furthermore, for progression of hESC-based therapies towards clinical applications, appropriate culture conditions must be developed to generate genetically stable homogenous populations of cells, to hinder possible adverse effects following transplantation. Other critical challenges that must be addressed for successful cell implantation include problems related to survival and functional efficacy of the grafted cells. This review initially describes the derivation of hESC and focuses on recent advances in generation, characterization, and maintenance of these cells. We also give an overview of original and emerging differentiation strategies used to convert hESC to different cell types. Finally, we will discuss transplantation studies of hESC-derived cells with respect to safety and functional recovery.
Safety, tolerability, and activity of mesenchymal stem cells versus placebo in multiple sclerosis (MESEMS): a phase 2, randomised, double-blind crossover trial
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), also known as mesenchymal stromal cells, have been proposed as a promising therapeutic option for people with multiple sclerosis on the basis of their immunomodulatory and neuroprotective properties. The MEsenchymal StEm cells for Multiple Sclerosis (MESEMS) study was devised to evaluate the safety, tolerability, and activity of autologous MSCs derived from bone marrow and infused intravenously in patients with active multiple sclerosis.
Stem cells as therapy for heart disease: iPSCs, ESCs, CSCs, and skeletal myoblasts
Heart Diseases are serious and global public health concern. In spite of remarkable therapeutic developments, the prediction of patients with Heart Failure (HF) is weak, and present therapeutic attitudes do not report the fundamental problem of the cardiac tissue loss. Innovative therapies are required to reduce mortality and limit or abolish the necessity for cardiac transplantation. Stem cell–based therapies applied to the treatment of heart disease is according to the understanding that natural self-renewing procedures are inherent to the myocardium, nonetheless may not be adequate to recover the infarcted heart muscle. Following the first account of cell therapy in heart diseases, examination has kept up to rapidity; besides, several animals and human clinical trials have been conducted to preserve the capacity of numerous stem cell population in advance cardiac function and decrease infarct size.
The purpose of this study was to censoriously evaluate the works performed regarding the usage of four major subgroups of stem cells, including induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSC), Embryonic Stem Cells (ESCs), Cardiac Stem Cells (CDC), and Skeletal Myoblasts, in heart diseases, at the preclinical and clinical studies. Moreover, it is aimed to argue the existing disagreements, unsolved problems, and prospect directions.
Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and stem cell therapy
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) represents arguably the most significant social, economic, and medical crisis of our time. Characterized by progressive neurodegenerative pathology, AD is first and foremost a condition of neuronal and synaptic loss. Repopulation and regeneration of depleted neuronal circuitry by exogenous stem cells is therefore a rational therapeutic strategy. This review will focus on recent advances in stem cell therapies utilizing animal models of AD, as well as detailing the human clinical trials of stem cell therapies for AD that are currently undergoing development.
Introduction to Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine
Stem cells are a population of undifferentiated cells characterized by the ability to extensively proliferate (self-renewal), usually arise from a single cell (clonal), and differentiate into different types of cells and tissue (potent). There are several sources of stem cells with varying potencies. Pluripotent cells are embryonic stem cells derived from the inner cell mass of the embryo and induced pluripotent cells are formed following reprogramming of somatic cells. Pluripotent cells can differentiate into tissue from all 3 germ layers (endoderm, mesoderm, and ectoderm). Multipotent stem cells may differentiate into tissue derived from a single germ layer such as mesenchymal stem cells which form adipose tissue, bone, and cartilage. Tissue-resident stem cells are oligopotent since they can form terminally differentiated cells of a specific tissue. Stem cells can be used in cellular therapy to replace damaged cells or to regenerate organs. In addition, stem cells have expanded our understanding of development as well as the pathogenesis of disease. Disease-specific cell lines can also be propagated and used in drug development. Despite the significant advances in stem cell biology, issues such as ethical controversies with embryonic stem cells, tumor formation, and rejection limit their utility. However, many of these limitations are being bypassed and this could lead to major advances in the management of disease. This review is an introduction to the world of stem cells and discusses their definition, origin, and classification, as well as applications of these cells in regenerative medicine.
Stem Cells: Innovative Therapeutic Options for Neurodegenerative Diseases?
Neurodegenerative diseases are characterized by the progressive loss of structure and/or function of both neurons and glial cells, leading to different degrees of pathology and loss of cognition.Continue reading
Clinical potentials of human pluripotent stem cells
Aging, injuries, and diseases can be considered as the result of malfunctioning or damaged cells. Regenerative medicine aims to restore tissue homeostasis by repairing or replacing cells, tissues, or damaged organs, by linking and combining different disciplines including engineering, technology, biology, and medicine. To pursue these goals, the discipline is taking advantage of pluripotent stem cells (PSCs), a peculiar type of cell possessing the ability to differentiate into every cell type of the body. Human PSCs can be isolated from the blastocysts and maintained in culture indefinitely, giving rise to the so-called embryonic stem cells (ESCs). However, since 2006, it is possible to restore in an adult cell a pluripotent ESC-like condition by forcing the expression of four transcription factors with the rejuvenating reprogramming technology invented by Yamanaka. Then the two types of PSC can be differentiated, using standardized protocols, towards the cell type necessary for the regeneration. Although the use of these derivatives for therapeutic transplantation is still in the preliminary phase of safety and efficacy studies, a lot of efforts are presently taking place to discover the biological mechanisms underlying genetic pathologies, by differentiating induced PSCs derived from patients, and new therapies by challenging PSC-derived cells in drug screening.