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Cell-based therapeutic approaches for Parkinson's disease: progress and perspectives

, : Cell-based therapeutic approaches for Parkinson's disease: progress and perspectives. Reviews in the Neurosciences 20(5-6): 347-381

Motor dysfunctions in Parkinson's disease are believed to be primarily due to the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons located in the substantia nigra pars compacta. Because a single-type cell population is depleted, Parkinson's disease is considered a primary target for cell replacement-based therapeutic strategies. Extensive studies have confirmed transplantation of donor neurons could be beneficial, yet identifying an alternative cell source is clearly essential. Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) have been proposed as a renewable source of dopaminergic neurons for transplantation in Parkinson's disease; other potential sources could include neural stem cells (hNSCs) and adult mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs). However, numerous difficulties avert practical application of stem cell-based therapeutic approaches for the treatment of Parkinson's disease. Among the latter, ethical, safety (including xeno- and tumor formation-associated risks) and technical issues stand out. This review aims to provide a balanced and updated outlook on various issues associated with stem cells in regard to their potential in the treatment of Parkinson's disease. Essential features of the individual stem cell subtypes, principles of available differentiation protocols, transplantation, and safety issues are discussed extensively.


PMID: 20397620

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