Adult stem cells cure renal failure in rats, process can be used in humans

.- Japanese scientists say a process involving adult stem cells that cured renal failure in rats should be able to work in humans, reported

A research team at the University of Tokyo transplanted 10,000 somatic stem cells from the kidneys of healthy rats into sick rats. They ran tests seven days later and found that kidney functions in the sick rats had returned to normal. In addition, the number of new stem cells decreased to about 30 percent after the repair work was done.

The researchers found that human kidneys have similar somatic stem cells. If successful in humans, the adult stem-cell therapy could help millions of patients worldwide who currently undergo dialysis.

"It's been confirmed that somatic stem cells in kidneys are capable of not only creating new cells but also restoring damaged organs,” said University of Tokyo associate professor Keiichi Hishikawa. “We may be able to develop drugs aimed at (activating) somatic stem cells.”

The team announced their findings in the June 20 issue of "Journal of Cell Biology."


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