Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Cord Blood Improves Alzheimer’s Pathology in Mouse Model, Study Finds

The illustrious Dr. Doug Shevlin forwarded to me an article he found in America’s Blood Centers Newsletter which describes a study using a mouse model published online last month in the journal Stem Cells and Development. The study suggests that targeted immune suppression therapy using human umbilical cord blood cells may improve the pathology associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers found that the amount of amyloid plaques – hallmarks of Alzheimer’s pathology in the brain – was reduced by 62 percent after venous infusion of umbilical cord blood. The study suggests that umbilical cord blood therapy may target the pathogenic inflammatory response that contributes to Alzheimer’s disease and other degenerative conditions in humans.

Citation: WV Nikolic, et al. Peripherally administered human umbilical cord blood cells reduce parenchymal and vascular amyloid deposits in Alzheimer mice. Stem Cells Dev. 2008 [Epub ahead of print]

Thanks for the article, Dr. Shevlin!


Anonymous said...

The problem with immune suppression therapy is that the patients will then succumb to opportunistic infections or tumors.

Brian E. Moore, MD, MEd said...

Your point is well taken, but the mechanism posited by the researchers is not so much immunosuppression as immunomodulation.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to see someone do the same study but comparing the effects of cord blood transfusion versus a simple blood transfusion, as even routine packed red blood cell products are thought to have some immunomodulatory effects (see, for example, Hill et al. J Trauma. 2003 May;54(5):908-14. or Amato and Pescatori. Dis Colon Rectum. 1998 May;41(5):570-85.)

And who is this Shevlin character? Never heard of him.

Anonymous said...

Great article. It is very interesting and informative!

Cord blood cost said...

In my very strong opinion, banking cord blood should not be controversial what-so-ever. In fact, due to the benefits the cord blood may one day offer if ever necessary, banking it should become a requirement or automatic. The only thing that should be controversial is the COST involved.