Can genetically engineered stem cells help restore vision?

Christel Payseng
4 min readAug 31, 2022

Macular degeneration symptoms can appear at a young age, and while they do not cause pain, they do cause visual distortion, such as straight lines seeming bent.

Sometimes, it leads to central vision loss in one or both eyes. The need for more light when reading or making chores, as well as increased difficulty adjusting to low light levels when entering dimly lit areas. It also includes increased blurriness when reading printed words and difficulty recognizing people on the street.

Without proper care and attention, this can lead to further retinal degeneration and, in severe cases, blindness. Researchers are eager to find a cure and are now investigating gene and stem cell therapies.

The Barcelona-based Centre for Genomic Regulation created a stem cell treatment for retinal degeneration that focuses on chemokine receptors, Ccr5 and Cxcr6, which they discovered to be important players in cell signaling.

Engineered mesenchymal stem cells from bone marrow with an excess of Ccr5 and Cxcr6 and transplanted them into retinal degeneration models. This maintained the function of the degenerating retinal tissue. The findings were published in the journal Molecular Therapy.

Scientists have studied stem cells extensively over the last 20 years and discovered that they contain properties that aid in the repair of retinal cells. They naturally protect neural cells and reduce inflammation by releasing molecules.

However, there are obstacles to using stem cells to treat eye disorders. Cells have a difficult time migrating to the eyes and integrating into the retina.

“After the cells are transplanted they need to reach the retina and integrate through its layers,” Cosma said. “Here we have found a way to enhance this process using stem cells commonly found in the bone marrow, but in principle can be used with any transplanted cells.”-CRG research professor Pia Cosma

Mesenchymal stem cells have advantages in treating eye diseases.

It is capable of transforming into retinal cells and growing outside the body.

When these evolved cells are implanted into human and mouse test subjects, they migrate in large numbers to deteriorating retinal tissue, preventing retinal cell death.

Another group, Mount Sinai, is developing a therapy that stimulates and genetically reprograms dormant Müller glial cells in the retina to repair the damage. Researchers at the University of Southern California were also able to create retinal implants from embryonic stem cells. During a clinical trial, it was demonstrated that it could improve the eyesight of people with advanced dry AMD.

The CRG team will now investigate whether different cell-modification methods could improve their Ccr5- and Cxcr6-targeted therapy. They used lentiviruses, which have been used in experimental gene therapies, to modify the stem cells for their study.

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Lourdes Duque Baron, an actress-singer, film producer, and author, and Michael York are staunch supporters of stem cell research.

Stem cell therapy has resulted in incremental improvements that allow Lourdes Duque Baron and Michael York to continue living with incredible energy and immune systems.

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Recipients of billions of stem cells attest to the truth and efficacy of this revitalizing and enormously powerful treatment.

Michael York, a well-known actor, became an advocate for stem cells after being treated for Amyloidosis and Multiple Myeloma.

While Lourdes Duque Baron received stem cell therapy to treat her osteoporosis.

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A new book about Stem Cells and their wonders was authored by Lou Baron and will soon be released.

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“ Age should not define what you can do best to create a better world for humanity to thrive upon without fear of old age and other symptoms of age-related degenerative diseases”- Lou Baron

Said book is based on years of painstaking research and recent discoveries on stem cell therapy pioneered by her better half, Dr. Baron, an esteemed general, robotic, and stem cell surgeon.
The book’s goal is to educate people about the direction and to get stem cells accepted in the mainstream. Stem cell therapy has the potential to transform the healthcare system as we know it.

Source:

https://www.fiercebiotech.com/research/restoring-eyesight-genetically-engineered-stem-cells

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Christel Payseng

Writer, PR Media, Literature Hobbyists, Digital Marketer