Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Progress using induced pluripotent stem cells to reverse blindness

Date:
June 18, 2011
Source:
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis School of Science
Summary:
Researchers have used cutting-edge stem cell technology to correct a genetic defect present in a rare blinding disorder, another step on a promising path that may one day lead to therapies to reverse blindness caused by common retinal diseases.

Human-induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells can be directed to develop into light-sensing photoreceptor cells of the retina. It is hoped that these cells can be used to better understand and treat human disease affecting the visual system.
Credit: Jason Meyer, Ph.D., School of Science at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis

Researchers have used cutting-edge stem cell technology to correct a genetic defect present in a rare blinding disorder, another step on a promising path that may one day lead to therapies to reverse blindness caused by common retinal diseases such as macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa which affect millions of individuals.

Related Articles


In a study appearing in an advance online publication of the journal Stem Cells on June 15, 2011, investigators used recently developed technology to generate induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from a human patient with an uncommon inherited eye disease known as gyrate atrophy. This disorder affects retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells, the cells critical to the support of the retina's photoreceptor cells, which function in the transmission of messages from the retina to parts of the brain that interpret images.

"When we generate iPS cells, correct the gene defect that is responsible for this disease, and guide these stem cells to become RPE cells, these RPE cells functioned normally. This is exciting because it demonstrates we can fix something that is out of order. It also supports our belief that in the future, one might be able to use this approach for replacement of cells lost or malfunctioning due to other more common diseases of the retina," said lead study author cell biologist Jason Meyer, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology in the School of Science at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

Macular degeneration is the most common cause of blindness, affecting an estimated 25-30 million people worldwide. One and a half million people worldwide are affected by retinitis pigmentosa.

Because iPS cells can be derived from the specific patient who needs them, use of these cells may avoid the problem of transplant rejection. In the study, vitamin B-6 also was used to treat the damaged RPE cells producing healthy cells that functioned normally. The retina is a relatively easily accessible part of the central nervous system, which makes it an attractive target for correction with iPS cells. Researchers are hopeful that once the gene defect responsible for a blinding disorder is corrected in iPS cells, these cells may be able to restore vision.

In addition to Meyer of the School of Science at IUPUI, "Optic Vesicle-like Structures Derived from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells Facilitate a Customized Approach to Retinal Disease Treatment" is co-authored by Sara E. Howden, Kyle A. Wallace, Amelia D. Verhoeven, Lynda S. Wright, Elizabeth E. Capowski, Jessica M. Martin, Shulan Tian, Ron Stewart, Bikash Pattnaik, James Thomson and David M. Gamm, all of the University of Wisconsin; and Isabel Pinilla of Blesa University Hospital and the Instituto Aragones de Ciencias de la Salud in Spain. Meyer is also a primary investigator with the Stark Neurosciences Research Institute at Indiana University School of Medicine. Thomson is also associated with the University of California -- Santa Barbara.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis School of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Jason S. Meyer, Sara E. Howden, Kyle A. Wallace, Amelia D. Verhoeven, Lynda S. Wright, Elizabeth E. Capowski, Isabel Pinilla, Jessica M. Martin, Shulan Tian, Ron Stewart, Bikash Pattnaik, James Thomson, David M. Gamm. Optic Vesicle-like Structures Derived from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells Facilitate a Customized Approach to Retinal Disease Treatment. Stem Cells, 2011; DOI: 10.1002/stem.674

Cite This Page:

Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis School of Science. "Progress using induced pluripotent stem cells to reverse blindness." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110615120248.htm>.
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis School of Science. (2011, June 18). Progress using induced pluripotent stem cells to reverse blindness. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110615120248.htm
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis School of Science. "Progress using induced pluripotent stem cells to reverse blindness." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110615120248.htm (accessed November 24, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, November 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Newsy (Nov. 24, 2014) A new study links greater authority with increased depressive symptoms among women in the workplace. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Winter Can Cause Depression — Here's How To Combat It

Winter Can Cause Depression — Here's How To Combat It

Newsy (Nov. 23, 2014) Millions of American suffer from seasonal depression every year. It can lead to adverse health effects, but there are ways to ease symptoms. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

AFP (Nov. 23, 2014) The arable district of Kenema in Sierra Leone -- at the centre of the Ebola outbreak in May -- has been under quarantine for three months as the cocoa harvest comes in. Duration: 01:32 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Don't Fall For Flu Shot Myths

Don't Fall For Flu Shot Myths

Newsy (Nov. 23, 2014) Misconceptions abound when it comes to your annual flu shot. Medical experts say most people older than 6 months should get the shot. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins