Japan to begin transplants using donor iPS cells

This news is from Lauren Tappan:

Four Japanese institutions will collaborate on transplanting tissue grown from induced pluripotent stem cells taken from donors into patients suffering from age-related macular degeneration, a hard-to-cure eye disease.

The initiative, announced Monday, will break new ground in that the cost of transplanting iPS-derived tissue will be significantly reduced by using stocked cells provided by donors, instead of using the patients’ own cells as in a previous case involving a sufferer of the same disease.

Under the partnership agreed on May 30, Kyoto University will provide iPS cells resistant to immunological rejection in the treatment and the government-affiliated Riken research institute will grow them into retinal cells. Osaka University and the Kobe City Medical Center General Hospital will implant these cells into patients as early as the first half of 2017.

The cost is approx. $1 million.


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