The study (pdf) represents the first evidence for the long-term safety of the pioneering therapy, which restored some vision to more than half of the patients who took part in the trial.
There had been concerns that the cells could be rejected by the body’s immune system or become overactive and grow into tumours. But after following the patients for up to three years, researchers said the treatment appeared to be safe.
The trial focused on 18 patients with two different types of macular degeneration (9 with Stargardt’s, 9 with dry AMD ). The diseases have no effective treatments and are among the leading causes of blindness in adults and children in the developed world.
Effectiveness is yet to be proven.
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