"It Could Take a Decade or More, but It's a Possibility"

Discussion in 'Research News' started by Aaron, Jan 29, 2014.

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    1. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012

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    2. LadyDi
      Busy

      LadyDi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barotrauma/airplane
      I am from Florida... Appears this facility is in the Orlando area and they work with kids only.

      In a nutshell...I am afraid a stem cell transplant treatment for tinnitus is a long, long way off. I think drugs or treatments that go after the neurological end of the problem will come sooner.
       
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    3. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      Yep, I just read every article no matter in 2009 or 2010 said that, it will be a decade, then in 2013, it is still said, it will be a decade or more, seems time frozen....
       
    4. David S

      David S Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2013
      Hopefully clinical trials are 3-5 years away. If those looks promising that would give us all some hope.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    5. David S

      David S Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2013
      For those of us with ok hearing and T there must be some easier way to tackle this...
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    6. Champ
      Woot

      Champ Member Benefactor Team Tech

      Location:
      Boston, MA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma from headphones
      Definitely. I doubt we're going to have regenerative organs for any part of our body anytime soon beyond the few experimental successes that have already happened (we as humanity have already done this!). But then again, I've been proven wrong before. We've only had the internet for about 30-40 years, and look at how fast that has evolved.

      We had HDTVs in the 80s but they weren't practical. Now everyone has a thin flatscreen HDTV in every room. Same with 3D printers - we're going to see that tech explode in usefulness soon. If you were to ask me though, I think they're going to try to "regenerate" the easiest organs in the body first, ones that are basically just a couple kinds of tissue. The inner ear is unfortunatley complex so our best bet right now is, like you said, something to calm or cease its errant signaling.
       
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    7. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      But for inner ear, it really seems to be more complicated than other organs, and the stem cell technology should be developed quicker, but the US lost some pace in 2000-2010 since some ethics and political issue, so the stem cell tech seems faster in Japan and even China....
       
      • Agree Agree x 3
    8. LadyDi
      Busy

      LadyDi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barotrauma/airplane
      LOL, I have noticed that, too, Aaron. It is turning out to be the longest decade on record!
      I also agree with Champ: Stem cell work, already complicated, is twice as complex when it involves the ears. They have made remarkable advances regarding hearing impairment in recent years, with cochlear implants and all. But I think researchers will be tempted by easier targets.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    9. frohike
      Approved

      frohike Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2009
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma
      New Scientist jan 2014 has a feature about the CRISPR method to knockdown individual genes in DNA. This is HUGE for genetic engineering and research, because scientist can alter specific genes, and see what happens, which is basically how they find out what gene does what, or what do they need to alter.

      It took 13 years and a billion dollars to sequence the entire DNA. Now it takes $100,000 in ion torrent chips and a few hours. It took $100 million dollars, five years, and many labs working together to knockdown 20,000 genes. Now it takes a single lab a couple of months. Remarkable advances are happening in genetic research.

      There is a trial doing this in Japan “iPS cell therapy for eye disease”. But iPS will soon be obsolete technology. The future is STAP cells, a perfect copy created without DNA manipulation of the original. The next issue of New Scientist has a feature called “Stem cell revolution”. I didn't read it yet, but I guess it talks about this article: Stem cell power unleashed after 30 minute dip in acid. This technique allows to create perfect animal clones, and to repair tissue by injecting healthy cells. Btw, STAP cells are so new that “Details were still emerging as New Scientist went to press” this month.

      Damn, now I want to read the feb issue already.
       
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    10. erik
      Breezy

      erik Manager Staff Benefactor

      Location:
      Washington State, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely hearing loss
    11. Owch

      Owch Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2013
      IMPORTANT NEW BREAKTHROUGH:
      http://www.theguardian.com/science/2014/jan/29/make-stem-cells-major-discovery-acid-technique

      Read to near the bottom of the article as there is an exciting bit...

      Simple way to make stem cells in half an hour hailed as major discovery
      Acid technique could lead to new era in regenerative medicine

      A radical and remarkably easy way to make cells that can grow into any tissue in the body has been developed by scientists in Japan.

      The feat has been hailed as a major discovery by researchers familiar with the work, and if it can be repeated in human tissue, could lead to cheap and simple procedures to make patient-matched stem cells that could repair damaged or diseased organs.

      In a series of elegant experiments, researchers showed that cells plucked from animals could be turned into all-powerful master cells simply by immersing them in a mildly acidic solution for half an hour.

      To demonstrate the potential of the cells, the scientists injected them into mouse embryos and showed that they grew into tissues and organs throughout the animals' bodies.

      Haruko Obokata at the Riken lab in Kobe, Japan, told the Guardian that her team had created several dozen mice that had tissues grown from the cells, and had followed their health for one to two years. "So far they appear to be healthy, fertile, and normal," she said.

      The finding has stunned many researchers because previous attempts to make stem cells have been fraught with difficulties. One route is cloning, which is controversial because it involves the creation and destruction of embryos. A more recent method, called induced pluripotency, uses genetic manipulation to convert adult cells into a more flexible, immature state.

      The work, reported in two papers in the journal Nature, was "a major scientific discovery that will be opening a new era in stem-cell biology," said Dusko Ilic, a stem-cell scientist at King's College London.

      His enthusiasm was shared by Chris Mason, a stem-cell expert at University College London. "If it works in man, this could be the game changer that ultimately makes a wide range of cell therapies available using the patient's own cells as starting material," he said.

      Obokata started work on the procedure five years ago while working at Harvard Medical School. The idea came to her after noticing by chance that cells that had been squeezed through a thin tube shrank to the size of stem cells. She went on to look more closely at what effects different kinds of stress – from heat, starvation and acidic conditions – had on cells.

      After years of perfecting the experiments, Obokata showed that she could convert white blood cells taken from newborn mice into cells that behaved very much like stem cells. She went on to do the same with brain, skin, muscle, bone marrow, lung and liver cells. "It was very surprising to see that such a remarkable transformation could be triggered simply by stimuli from the outside," she said.

      Obokata had trouble convincing other scientists, and her paper on the work was rejected several times. She eventually completed enough cross-checks to satisfy researchers that the findings were real.

      Obokata calls the procedure "stimulus-triggered acquisition of pluripotency", and the resulting cells Stap cells. Immersion in a mild acidic solution, with a pH of 5.5, worked best. Squeezing cells had a similar effect but was less efficient.

      "The generation of these cells is essentially Mother Nature's way of responding to injury," the lead author of the studies, Charles Vacanti at Havard Medical School, told Nature.

      Austin Smith, director of the Wellcome Trust/MRC stem cell institute at Cambridge University, said the work looked sound, but that it was unclear whether it would work in humans and with adult tissue, such as skin cells taken from a patient.

      If scientists can get the procedure to work in people, it could quickly overcome regulatory hurdles that have held up the development of therapies based on induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. Therapies based on iPS cells face scrutiny because genes are added to the cells to convert them into stem cells. These genes probably need to be removed before they can be used safely in patients.

      Obokata said work was under way to repeat her experiments with human tissue, but that they had no results yet. One of the many remaining questions is why cells in the body are not constantly turning into stem cells when they come into contact with acid, with heart burn, or when people drink fruit juice. The suspicion is that the ability to revert to stem cells is blocked when cells are in the body.

      Even if the procedure can be perfected in humans, Smith said major hurdles remain before patients could be treated with Stap cells. Any tissues grown from Stap cells would need to be proved safe in the body. Scientists would have to show they cannot turn into tumours, and demonstrate that they work with patients' healthy tissues without causing problems.

      Obokata said the new procedure might have uses beyond regenerating damaged body parts, and shed light on the way cells gather wear and tear through our lifetimes. "By studying the mechanism we might be able to learn more about how the age of cells is also locked in," she told the Guardian.
       
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    12. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      "Hi Aaron,

      Happy Chinese New Year!

      Indeed we have made some major progress in hair cell regeneration. We are working hard to translate the results to hearing recovery and to bring it to clinic sooner. As I always believe we will solve the problem, sooner than we knew just a couple of years ago. It's the hope, determination and hard work that will get us there. I have no doubt people of your age will benefit from it one day.

      Best,
      Zheng-Yi
      -----------
      Zheng-Yi Chen, D.Phil.
      Associate Professor
      Eaton-Peabody Laboratory
      Department of Otolaryngology
      Massachusetts Eye & Ear Infirmary
      Harvard Medical School
      Boston, MA 02114"

      Seems to be my best Chinese New Year gift!
       
      • Optimistic Optimistic x 3
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    13. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      I raised this question in another topic before: if tinnitus is a neurological problem of the brain then stem cells would only help restore hearing but wouldnt take away tinnitus?
       
    14. Garden Ring
      Mellow

      Garden Ring Member

      Location:
      Moscow
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud concert
      My understanding is that, according to one of the theories, tinnitus is caused by damage to outer hair cells, which may be so inessential that, in fact, it is impossible to detect with a hearing test. But still it is damage. So, if these cells are restored, luckily enough, tinnitus will go away.

      Still, in my view, the biggest problem about stem cell treatment, apart from obvious technical difficulties and ethical issues, is the fact that it can result in cancerous growth. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems to be the case.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    15. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      Mine is exactly at the ear, since the personal experience of my treatment, the injection into the inner ear will change my T temporarily, once suppressed, once made it louder, both temporarily. But I know my T is exactly at the cochlear. The problem is, everybody's T is so different, maybe some of the cases definitely from the brain. It makes sense that a previous report showed that 50% of the T will stop after cutting off the auditory nerve while the other 50% T still there or even worse. I could only think that this is the right treatment for me to expect:)
       
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    16. nills
      Barefooter

      nills Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Belgium
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2009
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      New information will overwrite the faulty brain signal making up for the the loss of information ... brain plasticity.
       
    17. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      Yeah.. Im also thinking that in some cases tinnitus sort of just occurs so maybe theres more to it.. different reason etc.. however some other treatment options ive read on this board are less invasive, less dangerous and seem more promising (eg. will come faster). I also think one thing is actually finding out how to regenerate hair cells and another is how long it will take to train doctors to do it. If scientists are able to regenerate hair cells in lets say, 10 years (which is very optimistic), then it would take another 10 to have doctors in different parts of the world who can do it without accidentally causing worse health problems. Therefore I hope soon there will be options to stimulate the brain:)
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    18. futuredreams

      futuredreams Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2011
      So many things are going on at the same time in the field of biomedical advancement. Stem cells technology, knowledge and future treatments are advancing rapidly - compared to more recent decades. If nothing major happens in the world I believe the actual rate of knowledge, treatments and so on will increase even more.

      Having said that, I want to add something that came with my regular mail today - todays copy of the Swedish magazine "new technology". It was a large article about stem cell research in the centre fold. The article depicted a optimistic future due to a very recent discovery from Swedens most famous medical research facility - Karolinska institutet. The article about the advancement will be published in this months issue of Nature communications.

      From the article, in English:

      They have apparentely come up with a method to extract and massproduce new embryonic stem cells from a SINGLE embryonic stem cell. There are 2 unique things with this method. One reason is its refinement of the proporties of the embryonic stem cells. Older technologies made embryonic stem cells of worse quality than the original cell, with genetic changes to the cells and biomolecular contamination. With this new technology the cells are practically free from both - which suits the extremely well for clinical trials. Karolinska institutet already has a small clinical trial on the horizon (last security checks for suitability) with these new cells to treat makula degeneration.

      The other unique thing about the method is its ability to solve one of the major roadblocks to wide usage of Embryonic stem cells, especially in the US, which is the Ethical problem. Before this method it was only possible to extract embryonic stem cells from embryos which had been left-overs from IVF (In vitro Fertilization, or Test-Tube babies), which ineviteably led to the death of the young embryo. From now on, that problem is solved. No more ethical discussion about killing the embryo, since they only need to extract a single cell from the embryo which don't affect the embryos ability of becoming a healthy baby.

      The Swedish Scientists conclude by saying that the method eradicates the wide-spread use of iPS, for regenerative purposes. Here's the exact quote, word by word:

      "The new cells, produced by our method, will be significantly better suited for regenerative medicine and clinical usage. We still believe though that iPS will be valuable to study what mechanisms that are behind different diseases".

      Let us not forget that iPS-cells got the Nobel Prize 2012. And now, some Swedish dudes say that have come up with a method that is BETTER for regenerative purposes. The future, although sometimes seems discouraging, might be here sooner than we think.

      With iPS-cells, this new technology for embryonic stem cells, and SNAP-cells, the future indeed looks interesting.

      Have a great weekend now everybody, and don't fall into despair due to tinnitus. I myself is hopefully going into the field of biomedical research (I go to medical school for now), and I feel that every single day is a small step closer, although the mountain is steep. Silence may come!

      For anyone interested, links to the article and some articles in popular science papers:

      http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2014/140127/ncomms4195/abs/ncomms4195.html
      http://ki.se/ki/jsp/polopoly.jsp;jsessionid=aoQD_uflPDEf_v6-tp?l=en&d=130&a=173156&newsdep=130
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140127092934.htm

      Best regards

      FutureDreams
       
      • Optimistic Optimistic x 2
    19. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      We all could go to Harvard together before they train other doctors, okay, then the TT meet point is Harvard, Cambridge, MA, USA;)
       
    20. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      Yeah its true:) But you know.. from my medical experience operation is always the last possibility. So probably stem cells are necessary for people like you who have measurable hearing loss (although for you it is also rather small, right?) whereas for other people with acoustic trauma but no hearing loss there really is no point for it. So maybe other treatments will be able to restore the brains normal function, brain yoga maybe:D
       
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    21. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      Actually I even have no medical experience before T, I used to be a man who never needs to go to hospital:D. Anyway, no matter stem cell or brain stimulation, we all welcome real cure if it works
       
    22. Grace
      No Mood

      Grace Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/14/2013
      Do you think that chronic tinnitus will be cured eventually? The whole brain memorizing thing scares me...
       
    23. Hudson
      Cowboy

      Hudson Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2003
      I honestly get very tired of hearing this "brain memorizing" theory that keeps getting pumped around. The brain doesn't memorize anything. If it did, why are there so many recorded cases of tinnitus getting worse for people? If tinnitus can get worse, it can get better. The brain retains a great deal of plasticity even in the later stages of life. Without it, people would not be able to learn new tasks. This notion that somehow tinnitus becomes locked in by memorization is simply a reflection of a lack of knowledge on the part of researchers.
       
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    24. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      Hi Grace,

      I am also not a fan of the "memorizing" concept, because I know so many cases, no matter cochlear implant or other treatment, cured patient's T for even more than 30 years
       
    25. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13

      Im telling you, brain yoga is the answer:D new branch!
       
    26. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      I read the original Japanese article, the woman is only 30 years old, OMG n-OBOKATA-large570.jpg
      Obokata Haruko(小保方晴子)30 years old, got PhD when 27 years old, begin this research when she was 25
       
    27. Grace
      No Mood

      Grace Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/14/2013
      Ahh good. The whole being positive thing is what really keeps me feelin better.. Just knowin everyone wont have to live the rest of there life with this.. I HOPEEEE!!!!!!! :) i pray in like 20 years when im in my 40s it will be history! And everyone on here is so smart :)
       
    28. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      I read several Japanese articles, really amazing, the lady is being discussed all over Japan, since she is so young, 30 years old only, got PhD when she was 27
       
    29. Aaron
      Fine

      Aaron Member

      Location:
      China
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/22/2012
      Maybe sooner than you expected, really, seems it is booming now
       
    30. Grace
      No Mood

      Grace Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/14/2013
      Totally agree with you.. If something can get worse then it CAN get better.. They just failed so many times maybe thats why they think this?
       

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