Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Cornea Blindness can be Treated with Stem Cells from Wisdom Teeth

A new research has revealed that stem cells from wisdom teeth may help treat cornea blindness. Most of the blindness across the world occurs due to disease in cornea.

The researchers said "Stem cells from the dental pulp of wisdom teeth can be coaxed to turn into cells of the eye's cornea and could one day be used to treat corneal blindness."

The study shows the stem cells of the dental pulp obtained from the routine human wisdom tooth are capable of being turned into Keratocytes, the corneal stromal cells.

The team injected engineered Keratocytes in the corneas of healthy mice and the keratocytes integrated without any signs of rejections. Also, they used cells for developing constructs of corneal stroma similar to natural tissues.

James Funderburgh, senior investigator and professor of ophthalmology at University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine said. "Corneal blindness, which affects millions of people worldwide, is typically treated with transplants of donor corneas."

He added "Shortages of donor's cornea and rejection of donor's tissue do occur, which might result in permanent blindness. Our work is promising because using the patient's own cells for treatment could help us avoid these problems."

The study was reported in journal Stem Cells Translational Medicine.

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