Publish Date: 
Friday, October 19, 2018 - 09:30

New treatment prevents transplant rejection

A new treatment strategy could increase the success rate of stem cell transplants, according to University of Queensland researchers. 

TRI based researcher, Dr Jatin Patel from UQ Diamantina Institute said researchers had found that immunosuppressant drugs had a negative impact on the transplanted stem cells. Dr Patel said that "Patients receiving a donation of stem cells from an unrelated individual normally need to take medication to suppress their immune system to prevent rejection,” 

“We found that without immunosuppression therapy, the delivered stem cells actually functioned better and may have a better likelihood of superior clinical outcomes for the patient.”

UQDI dermatologist Associate Professor Kiarash Khosrotehrani based at TRI said the treatment could be used for patients with chronic wounds caused by diseases such as peripheral vascular disease and limb ischemia.

“Chronically ill patients with extensive lower limb wounds due to poor blood flow are generally unable to undergo invasive surgical procedures and end up with amputation,” Dr Khosrotehrani said.

Dr Patel said the new treatment strategy harnessed the cells’ existing features.

“The strategy worked by combining two types of stem cells, one of which had ‘in-built’ immunosuppressant properties,” he said.

“Our patented technology to isolate these two stem cell types gives us confidence that such therapy can be trialled in patients in the future.”

The study is published in Stem Cells Translational Medicine (DOI 10.1002/sctm.18-0103).

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