iPS-cell cornea approved for clinical study
NHK -- Mar 06
A Japanese health ministry panel has approved a clinical study to transplant cornea tissues developed from human iPS cells, or induced pluripotent stem cells.

The panel approved a plan by a group of researchers led by Osaka University Professor Koji Nishida on Tuesday.

The group plans to perform the transplants on four patients suffering cornea damage that could result in loss of vision. Researchers will monitor the safety and effectiveness of the procedure for one year.

The plan was approved on the condition that the group submit reports after the studies on two of the patients are completed.

The study is the first of its kind anywhere, and the sixth to win government approval for treatments using iPS cells. Previous approvals include treatments for retina disease, serious heart illness and Parkinson's disease.

Health ministry officials say there are not enough corneas for transplants as the number of donors has been decreasing. In Japan, about 1,600 people were waiting on cornea transplants as of March last year.

大阪大学の研究チームは、iPS細胞から角膜となる細胞を作り、患者の目に移植する臨床研究の計画を厚生労働省に提出していた。厚労省の専門部会は5日、患者に対しリスクなどを文書で詳細に説明することを条件に研究計画を了承した。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
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