TCA Cellular Therapy, a small Covington laboratory came into lime light by initiating significant break through in stem cell therapy. It is claimed that they have successfully treated heart disease and limb ischemia through adult stem cell therapy.

According to TCA medical director Dr. Gabriel Lasala  Phase II trials for both limb and coronary ischemia is almost completed, and  he expects to present the positive results of both trials by the end of this year.

Lasala have already presented the preliminary findings of the severe limb ischemia Phase I trial at the American College of Cardiology’s annual i2 Summit.

The phase I trial included 10 patients who were in a real bad shape, with sever blockages in the legs and were not qualified for bypass, stents or any other treatment procedures, most of them were destinated for amputation of leg.

TCA takes bone marrow from the patients’ hips and multiples the stem cells in incubators in its lab,  The cells are then mixed and infused into damaged veins.

They also applied the technique in a Phase I trial for patients with severe coronary artery disease, Where patients were too ill to receive an operating  option.  Preliminary results of this trial was presented  at the International Conference on Cell Therapy for Cardiovascular Disease in New York in January.

TCA’s scientific director, Jose Minguell, PhD, initiates the idea of combined stem cell therapy (that is the patient’s own endothelial progenitor cells and mesenchymyal stem cells). He believes that the complex process of forming mature blood vessels involves several types of cells, including smooth muscle cells, and growth factors. Unless all of the components are available, the blood vessels will not form properly and will be unable to deliver the appropriate blood supply to the leg. Here hematapoietic cells would not work as they will never become muscle.

Meanwhile,  TCA is looking forward to raise money from private investors or through research grants in order to perform Phase III ischemia trials. Those trials are very expensive and involve 400 or 500 patients.

Source: Louisiana Medical News