Posted on Jul 24, 2018, 5 p.m.
As published in the journals of STEM CELLS Translational Medicine a minimally invasive method has been developed by researchers from San Michele Veterinary Hospital in Italy to effectively dogs with osteoarthritis that may be of importance to humans.
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis affecting millions of humans worldwide and close to a quarter of the dog population. The condition occurs as protective cartilage on bone ends wears down leading to discomfort, pain, and mobility issues.
Just an with human there are a variety of treatments for OA management in dogs ranging from alternative therapies and drugs to physical therapy, weight control, surgery, and more with variable success rates, none can be classed as the gold standard treatment. New approaches such as use of cellular therapies including mesenchymal stromal cells have recently shown promise, as adipose fat tissue is a useful source of naturally occurring regenerative cells due to its e]abundance in easy access. Micro-fragmented adipose tissue was chosen due to the capability to induce vascular stabilization and modulation of inflammation and pain.
130 client owned dogs with spontaneous OA were treated with micro-fragmented adipose tissue injections in 7 private veterinary hospitals. Stem cells were harvested from patients and injected into a disposable produce Lipogems device that progressively reduces the size of adipose tissue clusters while eliminating oily substances and blood residue with pro-inflammatory properties, stems cells were then injected back into the patient at the site of affected joints, all animals were treated by the same surgeon to guarantee standard operating procedures, with the process being carried out in a single surgical step and the patient going home the same day.
Outcomes were determined using owner scores and orthopedic examinations and for six months. 78% of the dogs showed improvement in orthopedic score registered 1 month after treatment, continuing gradually for 6 months when 88% of the dogs improved, there was no change seen in 11% of the dogs, and 1% worsened. Owner’s scores at 6 months had 92% of the dogs with significant improvements, 6% with slight improvements, and 2% worsening. There were no major adverse effects recorded. Results collectively demonstrated that micro-fragmented adipose tissue injections in dogs suffering with OA is not only safe but also feasible and beneficial, according to the researchers.
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