The University of California-San Diego charges forward with the first human clinical trial to inject stem cells directly into the spinal cords of patients with complete thoracic spinal-cord injury.
The object of the trial is to show that it can be done safely. It has been done successfully in animal trials and the animals had more coordination and were more active after the injection.
“The theory behind it is the stem cells will provide cells that will differentiate into the types of cells that can bridge the gaps that are created by an injury,” says Joseph Ciacci, MD, a neurosurgeon working on the project.
Researchers will follow five participants for five years after the initial injection of the stem cells into the spinal cord.
For more information, visit ucsd.edu.