Stem Cell Therapy May Fix Defects From Injuries To Head And Mouth

Editor's Choice Main Category: Stem Cell Research Article Date: 03 Aug 2012 - 14:00 PDT

Current ratings for: Stem Cell Therapy May Fix Defects From Injuries To Head And Mouth

The clinical trial was a collaboration of researchers from the University of Michigan School of Dentistry and the Michigan Center for Oral Health Research together with Ann Arbor-based Aastrom Biosciences Inc. involving 24 patients who required jawbone reconstruction after tooth removal. The researchers divided the patients into two groups, with one group receiving experimental tissue repair cells (ixmyelocel-T) and the other group receiving traditional guided bone regeneration therapy. The tissue repair cells ixmyelocel-T are currently being development at Aastrom.

Leading investigator Darnell Kaigler, who is assistant professor at the U-M School of Dentistry said:

Kaigler stated that the treatment is best suited for large defects, like those resulting from trauma, diseases or birth defects, since these are very challenging to treat due to their complex nature of requiring various different tissue types, including bone, skin and gum tissue.

He continued saying that the key advantage of using stem cell therapy is that the patient's own cells are used to regenerate tissue instead of using man-made, foreign materials.

The study achieved promising results. Study participants in the cell therapy group received dental implants at 6 and 12 weeks after their experimental cell therapy and were noted to have a greater bone density and quicker bone repair compared with those who underwent traditional guided bone regeneration therapy. They also needed less secondary bone grafting when receiving their implants compared with the traditional bone regeneration group.

The team used cells extracted from the patient's hip bone marrow, which was subsequently processed using Aastrom's proprietary system. This allows the growths of many different cells, including stem cells, which were then relocated into different areas in the patient's mouth and jaw.

Kaigler concluded saying that stem cell therapies are still probably 5-10 years away from becoming a standard treatment for oral and facial injuries and defects and that more clinical trials need to be conducted, which include a larger number of patients with larger craniofacial defects.

Written by Petra Rattue Copyright: Medical News Today Not to be reproduced without permission of Medical News Today

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Stem Cell Therapy May Fix Defects From Injuries To Head And Mouth

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