BACKGROUND Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory and neurodegenerative disease in which the myelin sheath of nerve cells is damaged. It can cause delayed neurologic symptoms similar to those seen in Lyme disease (LD) patients. Thymus derived T-cells (myelin reactive) migrate to the blood brain barrier and stimulate an inflammatory cascade in the central nervous system. Cell based therapies play an important role in treating neurological diseases such as MS and LD.
CASE REPORT Human embryonic stem cell (hESC) therapy was used to treat two patients with both MS and LD. The hESCs were administered via different routes including intramuscular, intravenous, and supplemental routes (e.g., deep spinal, caudal, intercostal through eye drops) to regenerate the injured cells. Both the patients showed remarkable improvement in their functional skills, overall stamina, cognitive abilities, and muscle strength. Furthermore, the improvement in the patients' conditions were assessed by magnetic resonance tractography and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT).
CONCLUSIONS Therapy with hESCs might emerge as an effective and safe treatment for patients with both MS and LD. Well-designed clinical trials and follow-up studies are needed to prove the long-term efficacy and safety of hESC therapy in the treatment of patients with MS and LD.
Source: G. Shroff. Transplantation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis and Lyme Disease. Am J Case Rep. 2016 Dec 13;17:944-949.