For several decades, there has been extensive research into how regenerative medicine, also known as stem cell therapy, can help patients suffering from central nervous system disorders. One of the most heavily researched conditions has been Parkinson’s disease. Patients who struggle with Parkinson’s understand how severe their symptoms can be and how rapidly the disease can progress. This makes finding an effective treatment essential for maintaining the quality of life. Here we will discuss the possible treatments for Parkinson’s Disease.
How Stem Cells Can Make a Difference With Parkinson’s Disease
Recent studies have shown that body fat could be a promising key to helpful stem cell treatment in patients with Parkinson’s disease.
Researchers at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital found that fatty tissue can produce stem cells for treating various central nervous system disorders, providing a homegrown source of regenerative medicine.
Neural stem cells were identified in these studies when scientists assessed body fat in mice. When examining the subcutaneous adipose tissue, researchers found nerve fibers that contained Schwann cells. Schwann cells are a type of cell used in the maintenance and regeneration of neurons in the peripheral nervous system.
In vitro analysis of the Schwann cells revealed that they can provide stem cell-like qualities. These stem cell qualities may have regenerative properties that support motor and sensory actions in patients with conditions like Parkinson’s disease.
One of the benefits of sourcing cells from body fat is that it is derived from the patient’s own tissue. Using homegrown stem cells has been shown to be most effective when treating numerous conditions.
Scientists found that the Schwann cells discovered in the study improved digestive function in mice with disorders like gastroparesis and colonic aganglionosis. This occurred when injected into the gastrointestinal tract of the mice.
When applied to the central nervous system, these cells could potentially improve nervous system function in patients with certain neurological disorders.
A researcher in this study explained:
“Because adipose stem cells are widely considered to be safe therapeutic agents for humans … the derivation of SAT-[neural stem cells] offers unprecedented potential for therapeutic application in neurological diseases.”
This means that the cells identified in the study could one day provide a safe, natural treatment for patients struggling with the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
A Promising Option For Parkinson’s
It is worth noting that there’s still much research to do when it comes to stem cells and how they might treat various disorders.
The relationship between Parkinson’s disease and stem cell therapy is the subject of several ongoing studies. The hope is that stem cell treatments are soon widely accepted as an alternative way to potentially relieve the effects of degenerative neurological conditions. If you would like to learn more about the available treatments for Parkinson’s Disease contact us today at Stemedix!