Scientists at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute are known around the world for discovering novel kinds of stem cells and deciphering how they work, but they are also increasingly known for translating their research in personalized therapies for patients. The following is a small but impressive example of the life-changing research taking place at The Ottawa Hospital.
- Dr. Duncan Stewart initiated the world’s first clinical trial of an engineered stem cell therapy for pulmonary hypertension, a rare but deadly lung condition that primarily affects young women. He also recently received Health Canada approval to begin a similar trial in heart attack patients. In both cases, stem cells are taken from the patient’s blood, re-engineered in the laboratory to be more powerful and injected back into the body, where they help repair and regenerate damaged tissue.
- Dr. Michael Rudnicki was the first to discover stem cells in adult muscle tissue, and he has also identified a protein that can stimulate these cells to regenerate and repair damaged muscles. This protein could enter into clinical trials in patients with muscle diseases within a few years.
- Dr. Eve Tsai is studying stem cells in the brain and spinal cord and developing new approaches to repair and regenerate the spine after traumatic injury, stroke and cancer.