Types of Adult Stem Cells
Stem cells reside in adult bone marrow and fat, as well as other tissues and organs of the body including the umbilical cord. These cells have a natural ability to repair damaged tissue, however in people with degenerative diseases they are not released quickly enough to fully repair damaged tissue. In the case of fat stem cells they may not be released at all. The process of actively extracting, concentrating and administering these stem cells has been shown in clinical trials to have beneficial effects in degenerative conditions. Few patients have access to clinical trials. We offer patients and their doctors access to these therapies now. Stem cell treatments are not covered by insurance.
Adult Stem Cells
Adult stem cells can be extracted from most tissues in the body, including the bone marrow, fat, and peripheral blood. They can also be isolated from human umbilical cords and placental tissue. Once the cells have been harvested, they are sent to the lab where they are purified and assessed for quality before being reintroduced back in the patient. Common types of adult stem cells are mesenchymal and hematopoietic stem cells.
Human Umbilical Cord Tissue Mesenchymal Stem Cells (HUCT-MSC)
Umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells reside in the *umbilical cords of newborn babies. HUCT-MSC stem cells, like all post-natal cells, are “adult” stem cells.
The Stem Cell Institute utilizes cord-derived mesenchymal stem cells that are separated from the umbilical cord tissue. For certain indications, these cells are expanded into greater numbers at Medistem laboratory in Panama under very strict, internationally recognized guidelines.
Among many other things, mesenchymal stem cells from the umbilical cord tissue are known to help reduce inflammation, modulate the immune system and secrete factors that may help various tissues throughout the body to regenerate.
The body’s immune system is unable to recognize HUCT mesenchymal stem cells as foreign and therefore they are not rejected. We’ve treated hundreds of patients with umbilical cord stem cells and there has never been a single instance rejection (graft vs. host disease). HUCT MSCs also proliferate/differentiate more efficiently than “older” cells, such as those found in the bone marrow and therefore, they are considered to be more “potent”.
Dr. Riordan on the Umbilical Cord Selection Process at Stem Cell Institute
“Through retrospective analysis of our cases, we’ve identified proteins and genes that allow us to screen several hundred umbilical cord donations to find the ones that we know are most effective. We only use these cells and we call them ‘golden cells’.
We go through a very high throughput screening process to find cells that we know have the best anti-inflammatory activity, the best immune modulating capacity, and the best ability to stimulate regeneration.”
Our stem cells and the US FDA
Human umbilical cord tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) that were isolated and grown in our laboratory in Panama to create master cell banks are currently being used in the United States.
These cells serve as the starting material for cellular products used in MSC clinical trials for two Duchenne’s muscular dystrophy patients under US FDA’s designation of Investigational New Drug (IND) for single patient compassionate use. (IND 16026 DMD Single Patient)
Bone Marrow Stem Cells
The bone marrow stem cell is the most studied of the stem cells, since it was first discovered to in the 1960s. Originally used in bone marrow transplant for leukemias and hematopoietic diseases, numerous studies have now expanded experimental use of these cells for conditions such as peripheral vascular disease, diabetes, heart failure, and other degenerative disorders.
At Stem Cell Institute, we use purified autologous (patient’s own) mesenchymal stem cells from bone marrow in our spinal cord injury protocol along with umbilical cord tissue mesenchymal stem cells.
Adipose (fat) Stem Cells
Fat stem cells are essentially sequestered and are not available to the rest of the body for repair or immune modulation. Fat derived stem cells have been used for successful treatment of companion animals and horses with bone and joint injuries for the last 10 years with positive results.
Experimental studies suggest fat derived stem cells not only can develop into new tissues but also suppress pathological immune responses as seen in autoimmune diseases. In addition to orthopedic conditions, Stem Cell Institute pioneered treating patients with osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and other autoimmune diseases using fat derived stem cells. However, we no longer use a patient’s own stem cells from fat because we’ve found that mesenchymal stem cells from umbilical cord tissue are superior.
Dr. Riordan published the first scientific article on treating humans (3 multiple sclerosis patients) with adipose-derived stem cells. We have treated many patients with adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells in Panama but we no longer do so because we have found that umbilical cord-derived MSCs modulate the immune system and control inflammation better. HUCT MSCs also proliferate much more efficiently.
Articles Authored by our Doctors and Scientists about Fat Derived Stem Cells:
*All donated cords are the by-products of normal, healthy births. Each cord is carefully screened for sterility and infectious diseases under International Blood Bank standards.