Some research suggests that genes, combined with exposures to environmental agents ranging from pollutants to chemicals in the diet, for example, could misdirect the immune cells to destroy neurons. By Alice Park March 19, But the study is the first to rigorously test the stem cell transplant for MS. The study involved people with relapsing multiple sclerosis, a condition in which cells in the immune system start to inexplicably attack the critical covering that protects nerve cells in the spinal cord, brain and eye. The results are still preliminary and were not published in a journal where other experts could analyze the data and vet the results.
But the idea of rebooting the immune system with healthy cells is one that is proving very effective in other fields as well.
They then took special medications to coax their stem cells, which produce the entire population of immune cells, out of the bone marrow and into the blood to start churning out new immune cells. But the idea of rebooting the immune system with healthy cells is one that is proving very effective in other fields as well. If the stem cell transplant results are confirmed, that could mean more people might be able to control their disease if they are treated early enough, before it becomes progressive and harder to treat. The results are still preliminary and were not published in a journal where other experts could analyze the data and vet the results. Without the coating, nerves gradually lose their ability to send important electrical messages that control things like movement and vision. In cancer, the Food and Drug Administration FDA approved a similar strategy in which the immune cells causing certain leukemias are destroyed and replaced with genetically engineered cells that now recognize and can destroy cancer cells. In the study, people were randomly assigned to receive current treatments for the disease, which can help slow the progression of the immune-driven damage to the nerve cells, or a stem cell transplant.