What Are Stem Cells? What Do They Do? Part 3

What Are Stem Cells? What Do They Do? Part 3


So, these
mesenchymal stem cells, with their magic soup and
those little vesicles that release the soup into the
body and into the organ that’s damaged, etc, what
is the outcome of this soup of cytokines that is released? Number one, a reduction of inflammation, a massive reduction of inflammation. Now, this is really
important because most of our chronic disease that we all know of, you all heard about them,
have as a part of their fundamental element, a systemic
inflammation of our body. It may only be your joints
that are hurting because you have rheumatoid arthritis,
but you have in fact, a massive systemic inflammation
throughout your body because of this rheumatoid arthritis. And the magic soup that
the stem cells release immediately reduces
inflammation at it’s source throughout your entire body. So let me give you an example again using rheumatoid arthritis. The drugs that you hear
advertised all the time on TV, Enbrel and Humira, they
in fact target the markers that you’ll find in someone’s
body, in their blood, that are inflammatory
markers showing how much inflammation is going on in their body. And people with rheumatoid
arthritis or other inflammatory diseases, those markers are really high, where they shouldn’t be. So you take the Enbrel and
Humira and after a certain amount of time, usually numerous weeks, slowly but surely they will
suppress those markers. But those drugs have very
serious and many serious side effects that are not good for us. On the other hand, if you
give that patient an infusion of stem cells, within
hours, a day or two at most, those same inflammatory
markers get reduced by like 50% and there is absolutely no
down time, no side effects, no detrimental elements
like there are for those pharmaceuticals. And if you
give them a second dose, their markers will go down another 50%. So this is powerful medicine and these, the stem cells are the ones that bring it, that release that
medicine into our bodies. Number two on the list
are autoimmune diseases, diseases where our immune
system has gone haywire and causing all sorts
of havoc in our body. Now, many of these diseases
we’re very familiar with. Things such as rheumatoid
arthritis, multiple sclerosis, lupus, IBD or inflammatory bowel disease, even type one diabetes
you may not know is also an autoimmune disease, psoriosis
which is a skin disease, even asthma has autoimmune elements to it, and various thyroid dysfunctions
are also autoimmune. Now there’s a whole other
class of diseases that have immune dysfunction associated
with them that are not exactly autoimmune, but
still stem cells work for them as well. And these include diseases
where you have a chronic persistent infection that
then causes the immune system to get over-reactive because
it can never calm down because the body is
infected and the infection doesn’t go away. Things like Lyme disease is
a perfect example of that, or herpes, viruses such as herpes or HIV, these fall into that category as well. Now to understand how stem
cells help in diseases such as these, we first
have to review briefly how the immune system is supposed to work. So what happens? We have these immune cells,
this lymphocyte white blood cells they’re often called,
and they are designed to react to invaders coming into our body. So take a look at this slide. We have a cell, it is waiting
around to be activated. It is properly activated
when a virus or bacteria or some kind of invader
comes into our body which causes the cell to become
activated, as you can see. Now, once it’s activated,
it’s going to expand, in other words it’s
going to duplicate itself and create a small Army
of other cells that are activated to fight that one pathogen, that one invader that started
this whole cascade going. Now, this is a very,
very specific function, it is highly controlled
’cause you don’t want to get this thing going out of control, and it’s going to then
fight the invader that has come into the body. And you’ll see that these
cells that expanded, these little Army of cells,
are releasing a whole bunch of special biochemical
moderators that are going to fight the infection and
attack the infection. Some of these biochemicals are, in fact, inflammatory biochemicals. It is an inflammation that is necessary. Most people think
inflammation is always bad, that’s not true. Our bodies need to have
inflammation in order to do all sorts of important functions, including the immune
system fighting pathogens. So quickly, in sum, when
this is a controlled very specific system it will
deal with invaders without going out of control and
hurting things or attacking things that aren’t the invaders. In an autoimmune condition,
or autoimmune disease, we have our immune white
cells, lymphocytes, that are waiting to be activated, but in this case they
are activated improperly, abnormally, aberrantly, not
by an invading bacterium or virus, but by our own tissue, something in our tissues
has activated the cell. And the cell then goes
through this massive clonal expansion, billions of
these cells are created in our body and all of
them are releasing these inflammatory biochemicals
that are causing the disease state in our tissues,
they’re attacking our organs, such as in diabetes. It’s attacking our own
pancreas and causing us to lose the ability to make insulin. Or they’re attacking the
cartilage in our joints and creating rheumatoid
arthritis and deformation of our joints and all
that pain that you see. Now, in traditional western medicine, we have these pharmaceutical
drugs that will work on helping us contain the
inflammation that we’ve been talking about. A great example is rheumatoid arthritis, the drugs Humira and Enbrel. So how do those pharmaceutical drugs work? They will target those
lymphocytes, those immune cells, and clamp on them and inhibiting
their ability to release those inflammatory lymphokine biochemicals. The drugs will also
target those inflammatory biochemicals themselves,
they will inactivate them. Again, it takes a number of
weeks for this to take place, but there’s a problem. Because it’s clamping down
not just on these cells, the aberrant cells that
are attacking our tissues, they’re clamping down
on all the immune cells. So now your immune functions,
your natural, necessary, important immune functions
are being suppressed throughout your body. Which makes you susceptible
to other diseases and infections. This is not a good thing. Now let’s look at stem
cells and see how they deal with this autoimmune
inflammatory disease situation. They will attack the
situation right at the source. Instead of waiting down to
the bottom of that slide where all the inflammatory
biochemicals are released by the immune Army, by that clonal Army, they will go up to that top
where that aberrant activation occurs and they will stop
the whole system from going out of control where that
clonal Army is created. They essentially heal the
problem at it’s source. So instead of just managing
the disease and trying to manage the inflammation,
as pharmaceutical drugs do, with all of their many
negative side effects, stem cells will essentially
cure the disease where it starts. We don’t exactly understand
how they do this, there’s still much about this
that is mysterious to us, but the fact is they do it. So if you’re suffering
from any of those long list of diseases that have autoimmune issues or autoimmune components to them, or massive inflammation
because of a chronic infection, stem cells could very
well be your solution. So again, number one reduce inflammation, number two modulate
autoimmune dysfunction. Number three, stimulate regeneration. We’ve been talking about that all along, and sure enough, if you
have a damaged organ or a damaged tissue and you insert
these mesenchymal stem cells into that damaged organ or tissue, it starts to regenerate. And in fact, it can completely regenerate. That’s for instance why stem
cells, these stem cells, can cure a person from diabetes. So instead of taking insulin
for the rest of your life, you just cure your
pancreas with stem cells and you don’t have to
take the insulin anymore. I’m an example of something very similar. I had had a very damaged knee,
I’d had 11 knee surgeries and last year I was due for
a total knee replacement because I had completely
worn out all the articular cartilage, the cartilage that
are those bones in that joint, I was bone-on-bone, my whole
knee became very deformed because of that and it was
excruciatingly painful. So I was due for a total knee replacement. Instead, we injected my
knee with these mesenchymal stem cells from an umbilical cord, six months later I had
completely regenerated my articular cartilage
and this July I’m climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. This is not an isolated case. Shoulders, knees, elbows, major athletes, Koby Bryant flew to Germany
to get the stem cells in his knee because he
couldn’t get them here. That’s a political issue,
we won’t talk about that. Now we can actually do this kind of work and the results are magnificent. Number four, one of the
questions that many people have about these stem cells, “Hey these stem cells came
out of someone else’s body.” True. So if you take tissue from
someone else’s body and insert it in my body, aren’t
I gonna have an immune response, a rejection of those things? You’ve heard, of course,
that sometimes people have to match, for instance, if someone
needs a kidney transplant, you have to match that kidney, the donor, with the kind of cell
membranes that you have in your body so that when
you insert that kidney you don’t reject it. When you reject a transplanted tissue, the reaction of your
immune system is intense. And that, in fact, can kill
you, let alone not having a functioning kidney. It’s called graft-versus-host disease. Well as a matter of fact,
these mesenchymal stem cells from the umbilical cord don’t
have the cell components, the cell wall components
that cause those kind of reactions, they’re what
they call immune privileged. So that you can put them in
anybody and the other person doesn’t get a reaction to them. In fact, their ability to
modulate immune response is so powerful that not
only do you not reject them, but if you’re in the middle
of rejection some other tissue that you’ve had
transplanted, like a kidney, and you’re in the middle
of the terrible chaos of graft-versus-host disease,
if they infuse those stem cells in you those
stem cells will calm that reaction down and you’ll
be able to keep the kidney usually and you’ll be
cured of that graft-versus-host reaction. And last, but not lease,
many people are concerned, “Will those stem cells
grow a tumor in me?” Well, now they won’t. And this is one of the
things that the FDA required a great deal of research
on to be sure that these stem cells don’t promote cancer. And in fact it’s been proven
that not only do they not grow cancer, they
actually will kill tumors, cancerous tumors. And this too, there’s a lot
of research on this and, by the way, at the end of
this lecture you’ll see some links that you can go to
for additional information. So where do we use them? Here are the three
areas, the inflammation, the autoimmune, and the regeneration. Under inflammation heart
disease, by the way heart disease is always associated with
vascular inflammation. That’s a whole topic for another lecture. Liver disease, diabetes, autism, the inflammation of your vasculature
also causes strokes, so there’s an element of
inflammation and getting strokes. In the case of autism,
again that’s a talk, or a subject for another presentation. Just know, though, that
autism is associated with massive GI or intestinal inflammation. And if you give the stem cells
to a child who’s suffering from autism, even a young
adult who’s suffering from autism the inflammation
in the GI goes away and the symptoms and the
characteristics of autism start healing and it can be very dramatic. The autoimmune column we’ve spoken about, rheumatoid arthritis, MS, Parkinson’s, Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy,
not necessarily associated with autoimmune, it’s more
of a genetic disorder. Well guess what? Stem cells not only arrest
the progression of the muscular dystrophy, it can even heal it. It’s just incredible, the
magic that happens with stem cell therapy. Regeneration, joints,
spinal cord, brain, strokes, the list is endless. But let me simply say that
one of the most dramatic examples is when someone is
paralyzed because they’ve had a spinal cord severed
and the prime example is a commercial pilot
who was in an accident, severed his spinal cord,
became quadriplegic, obviously lost his license to fly, the stem cell treatment
was done on his spine and a few months later
full function regained, got his license back and
is flying airplanes again. So this kind of thing
was the stuff of fantasy and now it’s real, it’s
actually happening.

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