A CLINICAL TRIAL is planed in Houston to gauge the efficacy of treating children with traumatic brain injury using stem cells from their own bone marrow.
The clinical trial by The University of Texas Medical School and Memorial Hermann Children's Hospital will be the first to apply stem cells to treat traumatic brain injury. It does not involve embryonic stem cells.
"There is no reparative treatment for traumatic brain injury," said co-principal investigator Dr. Charles Cox. "All we can do now is try to prevent secondary damage by relieving pressure on the brain caused by the initial injury."
The trial builds on research indicating bone-marrow derived stem cells can migrate to an injured area of the brain, differentiate into new neurons and support cells, and induce brain repair.
"This would be an absolutely novel treatment, the first ever with potential to repair a traumatically damaged brain," said Dr. James Baumgartner, co-principal investigator on the project.
As a Phase I clinical trial, the project's first emphasis will be to establish the safety of the procedure, with a secondary goal of observing possible therapeutic effects.
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