stem cells for ra rheumatoid arthritis

Posted and filed under Studies.

Specifically, the umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells were able to inhibit the proliferation of fibrolast-like synoviocytes cells from rheumatoid arthritis patients. These fibroblast-like synoviocytes are critical components of rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, the umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells reduced levels of cells that promote inflammation and increase the levels of those that fight inflammation.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, meaning that the immune system of those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis starts to attack the patient’s own body because it mistakenly perceives the body’s own cells as harmful foreign agents. The disease specifically involves the T-cells of the immune system and mainly attacks synovial joints like the knees and elbows.

Stem cells have been proposed to help with the treatment of a number of diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis. Because the current approaches for treating rheumatoid arthritis are expensive and none of them lead to long-term remission, new treatment options are actively sought. There has been evidence to suggest that bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells can help with rheumatoid arthritis, but recently, researchers theorized that umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells may have its own advantages for the use in treating the disease.

The idea for using umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells arose because of the ability of these cells to suppress the immune system. Specifically, these cells have been shown to affect the number of active T-cells, making them an appropriate candidate for opposing the physiological basis of rheumatoid arthritis.

The current study made strides in the technical use of umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells for treating rheumatoid arthritis and also provided evidence that these cells are particularly well-suited for this particular purpose. Specifically, the umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells were able to inhibit the proliferation of fibrolast-like synoviocytes cells from rheumatoid arthritis patients. These fibroblast-like synoviocytes are critical components of rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, the umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells reduced levels of cells that promote inflammation and increase the levels of those that fight inflammation. Finally, these cells also reduced the severity of the disease in a model of arthritis.

These promising results highlight the potential of umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells in medicine – and particularly their potential to aid in the development of treatment options for rheumatoid arthritis. Further research will likely help clarify exactly how these cells can be used in the disease and to what extent they can help rheumatoid arthritis patients.

Reference
Liu et al.. (2010). Therapeutic potential of human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. Arthritis Research and Therapy, 12(6), R210.