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Could Stem Cells Cure MS?

from the Scientist

Human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) have become a popular potential therapy for numerous autoimmune and neurological disorders. But while these bone marrow-derived stem cells have been studied in great detail in the dish, scientists know little about how they modulate the immune system and promote tissue repair in living organisms.

Now, one research team has uncovered a molecular mechanism by which hMSCs promote recovery in a mouse model of multiple sclerosis (MS).

According to research, published online Sunday (May 20) in Nature Neuroscience, a growth factor produced by hMSCs fights MS in two ways: blocking a destructive autoimmune response and repairing neuronal damage. The finding could help advance ongoing clinical trials testing hMSCs as a therapy for MS.

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