This is a great article that explains why new breakthroughs in research take so long to become a treatment. There is a lot of research going on for #macular degeneration along with other degenerative diseases that show promise but will not be available for many years- MDA
Doctors’ Notes: Why scientific breakthroughs take time to move from lab to bedside
Studies often produce a lot of hope, but also frustration that the “product” is not available to patients.
Last year multiple headlines saying stem cells could become a cure for blindness ran in newspapers just like this one. I read each story closely, because my research was the subject at hand.
Together with Faculty of Medicine professors Derek van der Kooy and Cindi Morshead, and a large team of scientists and engineers at the University of Toronto, including Brian Ballios and Michael Cooke, we made a breakthrough in stem cell transplantation.
We created a gel-like biomaterial known as a hydrogel that helps transplanted stem cells survive, integrate and repair damaged tissue in the brain and eye. We injected photoreceptor cells — cells in the back of the eye that are responsible for vision — that are derived from stem cells and encapsulated in our hydrogel into the retinas of blind mice. We were able to restore vision by approximately 15 per cent.
The media were right to get excited. We partially reversed blindness. What an incredible accomplishment, and further evidence of the therapeutic promise of stem cells.
Yet here we are more than a year later, and there’s still no cure. For many people with macular degeneration, or any degenerative disease for that matter, studies like mine often produce a lot of hope, but also frustration that the “product” is not available to them……….
Read more: https://www.thestar.com/life/2016/08/08/doctors-notes-why-scientific-breakthroughs-take-time-to-move-from-lab-to-bedside.html
Source: The Star