Since its discovery in 1950, stem cells have been considered as the ultimate breakthrough in modern medicine. The importance of stem cells can never be underestimated. Its ability to repair and/or restore damaged, diseased, or dysfunctional tissue gives hope to patients with varying health conditions and their loved ones.
Plexus Neuro and Stem Cell Research Centre offers the best regenerative rehabilitation in India. Founded by Dr. Na’eem Sadiq, India’s no. 1 stem cell specialist, Plexus uses only autologous mesenchymal stem cells taken from the patient’s own body as part of our rehabilitation program.
But what is autologous stem cell therapy? What are mesenchymal stem cells? How does a patient suffering from neurological conditions like Parkinson’s, Erb’s Palsy, or even a spinal cord injury benefit from stem cell therapy? Just how important is stem cell therapy?
Read on to find out.
What are stem cells?
Stem cells are progenitor cells that can transform and/or multiply into specialized cells.
Through a laboratory procedure known as differentiation, stem cells procured from one part of the body can become/grow into other kinds of cells.
Stem cells are the very foundation of every tissue/organ in the human body. The cells in our body have specific roles and functions. Stem cells, on the other hand, are undifferentiated cells that can turn into specific types of cells that our body requires.
What is stem cell therapy?
Stem cell therapy, alternatively known as regenerative medicine, helps in repairing or restoring function of diseased, dysfunctional, and/or injured tissue by injecting stem cells (or their derivatives). Injected stem cells provide immunomodulation, secrete growth factors, reduce inflammation, as well as generate supporting cells that protect damaged motor neurons from further deterioration.
Neuroprotection is one of the primary objectives of regenerative treatments like stem cell therapy. The two types of stem cell therapy include:
Autologous therapy : the patient is treated with cells procured from their own bone marrow, blood, or fat tissue
Allogeneic therapy : the patient is treated with cells from external donors
Types of stem cells and potential therapies
Embryonic stem cells therapy
Also known as pluripotent stem cells, embryonic stem cells (ESCs) are derived from the inner cell mass of an embryo in its early stages of development. These cells are usually grown in laboratory conditions. ESCs are derived from unused embryos that are from an IVF procedure. The embryonic stem cells are pluripotent, meaning they are unspecialized cells that do not have any specific characteristics like shape, or gene expression pattern. These cells can be differentiated into any cell type in the body.
Adult stem cells therapy
These are undifferentiated cells procured from fully developed tissues like the brain, bone marrow, etc. Since adult stem cells (ASCs) are multipotent cells, they have limited ability to differentiate into other types of cells. For instance, stem cells from the liver are most likely to make liver cells only. However, these cells play an important role in maintaining the integrity of the tissue in which they are found. ASCs can be used for tissue repair and regenerative medicine.
Induced pluripotent cells therapy
These cells have been genetically reprogrammed to exhibit the characteristics of embryonic stem cells. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are generated by introducing specific types of genes into adult cells. iPSCs can self-renew and also differentiate into any cell type in the body.
Since iPSCs are generated from the patient’s own cells, it significantly reduces the risk of immune rejection.
Mesenchymal adult stem cells therapy
These are adult stem cells. They display anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, self-renewal, cell-division, signaling, and differentiation properties. They have the ability to divide and develop into many specialized cell types in specific organs and/or tissues. They can even become unique stem cell types and can create more stem cells when cultured in a laboratory. Mesenchymal adult stem cells (MSCs) can replace cells that are diseased or damaged.
MSCs are sourced from different types of tissue, like adipose (fat) tissue, bone marrow, blood, dental pulp, umbilical cord tissue, liver, and skin.
The first MSCs were found in the bone marrow and were capable of making bone, cartilage, and even fat cells.
Mesenchymal stem cell transplantation can help slow down the rate of degeneration caused by MND, Parkinson’s and other illnesses.
Stem cell therapy at Plexus
At Plexus, India’s first ISO-Certified stem cell research center, the stem cell procedure involves the following steps:
Step 1: Review the patient’s medical history
Step 2: Thorough physical examination of patient by a panel of stem cell consultants
Step 3: Patient’s eligibility for stem cell therapy is ascertained
Step 4: Stem cells are procured from the patient’s bone marrow; this procedure is performed under local anesthesia
Step 5: Collected stem cells are prepared sent to the laboratory for quality checks and isolated for further therapy
Step 6: Patient is discharged
Step 7: The isolated stem cells divide and form daughter cells which can either self-renew or turn into specialized cells like brain cells, bone cells,
Step 8: Further course of treatment is determined
Advantages of stem cell therapy at Plexus
Stem cell therapy has the following benefits:
- Enhanced everyday functioning
- Improved quality of life
- Immune system modulation and reduction of inflammation
- Prevention of further nerve damage
- Speedy recovery post-procedure
- Non-surgical procedure
- Zero complications and side-effects
Plexus Neuro and Stem Cell Research Centre uses autologous mesenchymal stem cells taken from the patient’s own body. The procedure is conducted by Dr. Sadiq, India’s no. 1 stem cell specialist, and his team of highly-skilled and experienced stem cell specialists.
What is the most useful stem cell?
Pluripotent stem cells are procured from an early embryo and have the ability to differentiate into almost any cell type. They are believed to be the most useful stem cells.
How valuable are stem cells?
A stem cell can be regarded as the body’s raw material. It is from these cells that other specialized cells are generated. These specialized cells have their own function and ability. Stem cells are the very foundation of our existence. So, one can imagine just how valuable and beneficial they can be when it comes to giving patients suffering from neurological conditions like Parkinson’s, Erb’s Palsy, Multiple Sclerosis, etc. a new lease on life.
What are the features of stem cells?
The two main defining features of stem cells are the ability to differentiate into a specialized adult cell type and perpetual self-renewal.
What is the future of stem cells?
Stem cells have the potential to grow into new tissue. Scientists and medical researchers also believe stem cells can be used to generate new organs (that can be transplanted). The future of stem cells lies in their limitless potential.
What is the source of stem cells?
There are four main sources of stem cells. They are:
- Embryonic tissues
- Fetal tissues
- Adult tissues
- Differentiated somatic cells