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Stem cell transplants show promise for MS: U.S. study

Posted Nov 17 2009 10:20pm
Source: Reuters News
Thu Jan 29, 2009 6:47pm EST

By Julie Steenhuysen

CHICAGO (Reuters) - U.S. researchers have reversed multiple sclerosis symptoms in early stage patients by using bone marrow stem cell transplants to reset the immune system, they said on Thursday.

Some 81 percent of patients in the early phase study showed signs of improvement with the treatment, which used chemotherapy to destroy the immune system, and injections of the patient's bone marrow cells taken beforehand to rebuild it.

"We just start over with new cells from the stem cells," said Dr. Richard Burt of Northwestern University in Chicago, whose study appears in the journal Lancet Neurology.

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