Dr. Ke Cheng is well-known for his work with stem cell therapies, which are life saving for patients suffering from a myriad of problems. Recently Dr. Cheng and a group of international collaborators developed a new delivery system for cardiac stem cells, which allows for more efficient and efficacious treatment of post-event heart damage. Current cardiac stem cell delivery is simple and leads to retention of only 1% of the stem cells injected into the affected area. Dr. Cheng’s new nanogel delivery system, on the other hand, encapsulates the stem cells in a nanogel that is liquid at room temperature but thick and sticky when heated, leading to a retention of 15% of injected stem cells. The nanogel ensures that the stem cells bind to the affected injection site while also preventing a patient’s immune system from obliterating the foreign stem cells, thereby providing a long-lasting and effective treatment. The delivery system has shown very promising results in mouse and pig models, and the team is hopeful that a human clinical trial will show similar success.
You can read more about this exciting discovery at NC State News.