University of Sydney researchers have successfully used human stem cells to make pain-killing neurons that provide lasting relief in mice, without side effects, in a single treatment. After this finding, the next progressive step will be to perform extensive safety tests in rodents and pigs, and then move towards human patients suffering chronic pain within the next five years.
If these tests are successful in humans, this could be a major breakthrough in the development of new non-opioid, non-addictive pain management strategies for patients, the researchers said.
“Thanks to funding from the NSW Ministry of Health, we are already moving towards testing in humans,” said Associate Professor Greg Neely, a leader in pain research at the Charles Perkins Centre and the School of Life and Environmental Sciences.
“Nerve injury can lead to devastating neuropathic pain and for the majority of patients there are no effective therapies. This breakthrough means for some of these patients, we could make pain-killing transplants from their own cells, and the cells can then reverse the underlying cause of pain.”
READ MORE: University Of Sydney (SOURCE)
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