Researchers at Seoul National University Hospital are using stem cells to reconstruct segments of the esophagus due to birth defects or damage following treatments for cancer. The current standard of care has several drawbacks, since it involves taking a portion of a patient’s small intestine to reconstruct the esophagus when all, or part, of it is removed. In an animal model researchers 3D printed a two-layered scaffold using nanofibers in the shape of an actual esophagus, then seeded the scaffold with mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). The technique enables researchers to cater the shape to the exact specifications for the form and function of the esophagus, including the placement of the thyroid gland flap.
With further development, this new technique will improve the quality of life for patients who would otherwise live with disfigurements and feeding tubes as a result of birth defects, trauma and cancer treatments. Seeding the scaffold with stem cells will result in the reconstructed esophagus matching the esophageal tissue type exactly. Additionally, using the patients’ own [autologous] stem cells eliminates the risk of rejection of the replacement tissue.
As regenerative engineering progresses, we believe the best stem cells to use in emerging treatments will be the patient’s own [autologous stem cells] as this negates the need to find a suitable donor and eliminates the chances of rejection of the transplanted tissue. To learn more about banking your own valuable stem cells to insure your family’s future health, visit StemSave or call 877-783-6728 (877-StemSave) today.
The Future of Regenerative Medicine is Now™
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