Stem cell therapy to help treat your spinal pain
Stem cells: necessity, purpose, effectiveness
One of the unsolved problems of modern vertebrology and neurology remains a complex of diseases associated with degenerative changes in intervertebral discs. Traditionally used methods can only remove individual symptoms of the disease, while there is practically no possibility of interrupting the pathological chain leading to the sequential damage of most of the intervertebral discs.
Experimental studies have shown that transplantation of the stem cell culture of multipotent mesenchymal stem cells leads to the regeneration of the intervertebral disc tissues, which manifests itself in increasing disk height and increasing its hydrophilicity, as well as the formation of a three-dimensional cartilaginous tissue replacing the pulpous nucleus and performing its function.
Particular attention is paid to the use of cellular technologies. The journal Biomolecular Engineering published the results of the first phase of the clinical study within the EuroDisc program conducted in Germany. 12 patients aged 18 to 60 years were injected with autologous cell transplantation into the intervertebral discs of the lumbar spine.
The general observation period was up to two years. As a result, after 3 months after transplantation of autologous stem cells, the state of intervertebral disc tissues was improved, manifested in tissue hydration, increase in disc height detected with magnetic resonance imaging (T2 mode).
Morphological methods have shown that chondrocytes survive after transplantation, proliferate (BrdU label), synthesize intercellular matrix proteins (proteoglycan) and collagen (types I and II). Reduction and complete disappearance of the pain syndrome was observed for two years (which corresponds to the radiographic reconstruction of the disc). The clinical state of patients was significantly improved in all functional scales used in the study. All patients after stem cell transplantation did not require subsequent surgery, despite the incomplete removal of disc tissues and a high probability of secondary protrusions.
Thus, the conducted clinical study within the first phase showed the safety and effectiveness of transplantation of autologous stem cells for restoration of intervertebral disc tissues in patients subjected to removal of intervertebral minimally invasive methods.