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New stem cell treatment halts MS


A revolutionary new stem cell treatment is reversing the effects of multiple sclerosis(MS) and even halting the progression of the disease.

Patients involved in the ground-breaking trial have found themselves been able to walk again after years of being wheelchair-bound and seen changes within days of being treated.

MS is the most common chronic neurological disease that predominantly affects adults between the ages of 30 and 40. It is not known what causes it, but some doctors believe it is the immune system attacking the brain and spinal cord, leading to inflammation, pain, disability and, in severe cases, death.

One of the participants in the trail, Holly Drewry, 25, from Sheffield, claimed the treatment had changed her life. Drewrytold BBC current affairs programme Panorama she had been unable to carry her two-year-old daughterfor fear of falling as a result of MS leaving her unable to walk steadily.

However, within days of the stem cells being implanted she started seeing changes and she was able to walk out of the hospital.Reviews of Drewry’s treatment have shown her condition has been halted dramatically. While she will need to be monitored for years, it is hoped the transplant has provided a permanent fix.

The treatment involves the patient’s stem cells being harvested from their blood and their immune system is completely destroyed by chemotherapy. The stem cells are then transplanted into the body where they start to grow new red and white blood cells within two weeks,with the immune system rebuilt within one month.

Specialists have warned that patient need to be fit for the treatment to work.

Another factor that may influence the success of this treatment is getting a perfect stem cell match, without which the body may reject transplanted cells. The best stem cells are those harvested from lost baby teeth while the patient is young as they will not have been weakened by age or pollutants.