Stem cell success for macular degenerationThursday 10 May 2018
A ground-breaking stem-cell implant procedure has enabled a man and a woman suffering from severe wet macular degeneration (AMD) to read again. Experts claim the procedure offers real hope to AMD sufferers.
The two patients, and man in his 80’s and a woman in her 60’s, had a stem cell patch inserted under the retina of each eye. Both were then monitored for a year. The results were astonishing. Both patients went from not being able to read at all to reading up to 80-words-per-minute with their normal reading glasses.
Stem cells have been used before to help AMD sufferers, but this is the first time a lab-grown patch has been transplanted into a human eye. The procedure was devised by scientists from UCL and Moorfields, who acknowledge that this is a very small test group and that further work needs to be done before the operation is made available to a broader patient base.
Professor Lyndon da Cruz, consultant ophthalmologist at Moorfields, says: “what we have learned from this study will benefit many more in the future.”