Stem Cell

Stem Cell Therapy Selectively Targets and Kills Cancerous Tissue

Researchers have created a method to kill cancerous tissue without causing the harmful side effects of chemotherapy.

Medical researchers at the University of California, Irvine have created a stem cell-based method to zero in on cancerous tissue. This method kills the cancerous tissue without causing the nasty side effects of chemotherapy. Such side effects are avoided by treating the disease in a more localized manner. The advancement was spearheaded by associate professor of pharmaceutical sciences Weian Zhao. The details of the stem cell therapy were recently published in Science Translational Medicine.

About the new Stem Cell Therapy

Zhao’s team programmed stem cells derived from human bone marrow to pinpoint the specific properties of cancerous tissue. They implemented a portion of code to these engineered cells to identify stiff cancerous tissue, lock onto it and implement therapeutics. The researchers safely used this new stem cell therapy in mice to kill metastatic breast cancer that had moved to the lungs. They transplanted these engineered stem cells in order for the team to pinpoint and settle in the site of the tumor.

Once the stem cells reached the tumor, they released enzymes referred to as cytosine deaminase. The mice were then provided with an inactive chemotherapy known as prodrug 5-flurocytosine. The tumor enzymes stimulated the chemotherapy into action. Zhao stated his team zeroed in on metastatic cancer that occurs when the disease moves to additional parts of the body. Metastatic