Stem Cells Improved the Outcomes of Patients with COVID-19 | Fraum Center For Restorative Health | Hilton head Chiropractor | Hilton Head Restorative Medicine
Stem Cell Therapies Show Promise in the Fight Against COVID-19
May 4, 2020

Stem Cells Improved the Outcomes of Patients with COVID-19

The hope and promise of stem cell therapies is being illustrated by the plethora of academic research studies being published at an accelerating velocity. I have gathered several that I find very compelling. Please read on for the articles and my assessment and translation of what this means for our patients.

 “Transplantation of ACE2” Mesenchymal Stem Cells Improves the Outcomes of Patients with COVID-19 Pneumonia” Aging and Disease. 2020, Vol 11(2): 216-228.

This study is important because we are struggling to effectively treat the dreaded complication of COVID-19 infection: diffuse pneumonia (it’s in all of the lungs rather just one part as in bacterial pneumonia) and failure of other organs that is killing patients. To date, this study offers the most hopeful and effective treatment for severe COVID-19 infection.

  • After our immune system kills the virus, an inflammatory storm is triggered that damages our own tissues, most commonly seen in the lungs. The focus of therapy should be to try to stop this inflammatory storm that COVID-19 triggers.
  • The mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) were found to be free of COVID-19 infection. This is the first study that confirmed this.
  • 7 patients were treated with IV mesenchymal stem cells and monitored for both real world and laboratory improvements. 3 patients were given a placebo.
  • Of the 3 patients treated with placebo, one has died and 2 have remained critically ill.
  • The 7 patients treated with IV MSCs showed significant real world and laboratory improvements within 48 hours. Their lab work showed significant improvement as well (inflammatory markers plummeted). In all of the patients treated with IV MSCs, all of the symptoms disappeared at the 2-4 day mark- including the critically ill patients!

 “A First-in-Human, Phase 1 Study of Neural Stem Cell Transplantation for Chronic Spinal Cord Injury” Clinical Progress. Jun 2018, Vol 22(6): 941-950.E6.

This study is important because we do not currently have a method to repair spinal cord injuries. The loss of motor and sensory function not only irrevocably changes the patient’s life but also means the patient will struggle with wounds, blood clots and severe infections that become progressively antibiotic resistant. Life expectancy is drastically decreased to the spinal cord injury and the resulting complications. We have not been able to improve life expectancy in these patients in the last 30 years.

  • 4 patients were enrolled that had spinal cord injuries between T2-T12 in the last two years. At these levels that patients would be unable to walk but would be able to speak and breath and use their arms.
  • Neural stem cells were injected in to the spines of these patients.
  • All tolerated the procedure well and had no adverse events.
  • 3 of the 4 patients had significant and measurable improvements in motor function although they all remained paraplegics.
  • This study shows the safety of stem cell placement in the spinal cord and should encourage further research in this area due to the demonstrated safety.