Trachea and oesophagus tissue engineering - Paolo Macchiarini

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Author: Paolo Macchiarini - Karolinska Institutet, Sweden

The ramifications of stem cell research and therapy are enormous. We provided evidence that stem cells can be successfully applied to laryngo-tracheal and windpipe transplants for adults and children but why not imagine to use stem cell therapy in patients with otherwise untreatable end-stage diseases of the respiratory system? The debate still ranges on about the use of embryonic or adult stem cells. However, many are unaware, or ignore, that the adult body naturally carries its own stem cells (stem cell niches), and that these can be recruited or mobilized to repair or restore damaged tissues and organs. Our ongoing phase I-II clinical trials use "dormant" stem cells that are either taken or recruited directly from the patients body to repair untreatable tissues or organs, thus nearly eliminating any ethical or religious arguments to the stem cell treatment, and regulations.