New Stem Cell Program Offers Hope for Osteoarthritis Sufferers
Even though around 7 million people in France and more than 70 million in Europe are currently living with osteoarthritis today, there is still no treatment capable of anatomically reversing the debilitating disease.
To try to combat this startling reality, the European Commission has agreed to finance a four-year research program known as the ADIPOA project. Coordinated by Professor Christian Jorgensen, Head of The Clinical Unit for Osteoarticular Diseases University Hospital Montpellier in France, the ADIPOA project is a collaborative program bringing together 200 researchers from seven countries to work to validate a new concept of treatment based on stem cell therapy.
Phase 1 of the ADIPOA project was completed in 2014 and the results were sufficiently encouraging to warrant a larger, multi-centre Phase 2b study, designed to further test the effectiveness of the treatment.
ADIPOA-2, as it's known, will now build on the previous study's work and further assess the safety and efficacy of patient-derived stems cells in the treatment of advanced osteoarthritis of the knee.
Professor Jorgensen said: "Ambitious as it sounds, we are aiming to deliver an effective treatment for the debilitating and incurable condition of osteoarthritis within as little as five years. We have arrived at this point because of a great deal of work by many scientists, clinicians and stem cell experts who have made enormous contributions in understanding the therapeutic potential of stem cells."