New “Molecular Key” to Aid Blood Stem-Cell Transplants

April 25, 2009

(ChatahBox)—A new “molecular key” discovered by University of British Columbia researchers, may increase the success of blood stem cell transplants, used to treat devastating diseases, sush as leukemia, Hodgkin’s lymphoma and aplastic anemia, offering hope to many who suffer from the often fatal conditions. Head researcher, Professor Hermann Ziltener of the Biomedical Research Centre, discovered a molecule called S1P that opens up the thymus gland to accept the stem cells and produce life-saving T-cells.

Patients receiving treatment by the transplantation of donor blood stem cells, often require repeated infusions, because of the inability of the stem cells to properly regenerate the diseased cells of the thymus gland. The donor stem cells produce life-saving red and white blood cells and platelets to create new health blood. However, patients also require white blood cells or T-cells to trigger a healthy immune system response, which are generated from the thymus gland.

With the new S1P molecular key, the thymus more readily accepts migrating stem cells, producing the much needed T-cells, offering patients a greater chance of recovery and survival. Treating patients with drugs able to control S1P, can now allow scientists to manipulate the “gates” of the thymus gland to either open or close.”

Once scientists find a method to control T-cells to develop S1P formation, large scale clinical trials can begin.

This promising new study is available in the latest issue of the Journal of Experimental Medicine.

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One Response to “New “Molecular Key” to Aid Blood Stem-Cell Transplants”

  1. New “Molecular Key” to Aid Blood Stem-Cell Transplants < It’s all about the trends on May 1st, 2009 9:02 pm

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