Angelo Vescovi, Ph.D.: Human Neural Stem Cells – Physiology, Pathophysiology and Recent Clinical Trials
Houston Methodist Research Institute presents:
Angelo Luigi Vescovi, PhD
Professor of Cell Biology
University of Bicocca, Milan, Italy
Scientific Director, IRCCS,
Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza, Mendel, Rome
This presentation focuses on human neural stem cells (hNSCs) from the perspective of their initial discovery, through the understanding of their physiology and the process that led to implementing clinical trials for neurological disorders and for incurable glioblastomas. Stem cells can carry out a plethora of therapeutic actions, spanning the replacement of dead cells, immunomodulation, anti-inflammatory, trophic, homeostatic, scavenging and toxicity-blunting effects. Over 3 decades, we isolated hNSCs, unraveled their idiosyncratic properties, established cGMP compliant lines and implemented. 1) a successful Phase I clinical trial in which 18 ALS patients received hNSCs grafts into the lumbar and cervical spinal cord; 2) a phase I trial with hNSCs intracerebroventricular injection to treat secondary, progressive multiple sclerosis patients. Findings on hNSCs underpinned a new therapeutic neuroncological concept, i.e. pro-differentiation therapy and a related phase I trial on glioblastomas in Holland, Italy and Israel.
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