Published: 22 Jan 2020, 05:38 pm
Israel's researchers have found a method to rejuvenate the kidneys that can eliminate the need for dialysis in the future, Israel's Sheba Medical Center (https://www.shebaonline.org/about-us/) said Wednesday.
Researchers from the center showed in a study published in the journal Cell Reports that rejuvenation of the kidneys and improvement of their function using the patient's own stem cells is possible.
Previously, adult kidneys were shown to be able to constantly regenerate themselves over time through the operation of colonies of cells that replace lost and degenerated cells in the kidneys.
In the current study, the team developed a new technology that allows the extraction of such healthy kidney cells from diseased kidneys.
These cells are expanded into large numbers within a laboratory environment, and by the generation of three-dimensional cultures called "kidney spheres", they show improved function to generate new kidney tissue and replace lost cells.
The cells are administered into the kidney, allowing them to rebuild it, positively influence neighboring cells and improve the kidney's function.
Because the newly developed technology relies on the patient's own cells, it circumvents problems associated with immune rejection.
This treatment, successfully tested on mice, resulted in improved renal function in the treated mice.
The results are expected to be further studied in clinical trials in patients with renal failure.