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Intravenous Drip

The Appeal of Mesenchymal Stem Cells

Precision Medicine is rapidly emerging at the Clinic for Special Children due largely to the amazing breadth of genetic information available. Just 5 years ago, databases were accumulating autism susceptibility genes at record speed and the diversity of these genetic changes has been found to continue in expansion and diversity while overwhelming most providers. (Bracha L. Kreiman, Richard G. Boles, State of the Art of Genetic Testing for Patients With Autism: A Practical Guide for Clinicians,
Seminars in Pediatric Neurology, Volume 34, 2020, 100804, ISSN 1071-9091, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.spen.2020.100804.https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1071909120300103)

As the genetic contribution to the autism epidemic is finding its explanation on the side of epigenetic changes, primarily related to environmental factors, I am left with a genetic roadmap that sometimes leads me nowhere in my endeavor to deliver individualized and precision medical care.

Yet, over the past 8 years, I have been seeing the benefits of infused mesenchymal stem cells. These cord blood and tissue stem cells, if presumed normal, have the potential to temporarily substitute or compensate for the genetic variances now widely known to be associated with autism.  

 

And I’m in good company. 

 

Others have found that MSC IV infusions can consistently and significantly reduce the core symptoms in 88% of ASD patients, with enduring effects beyond 6 months and longer and with no adverse effects reported over the 6-month follow-up period.  (Mesenchymal Stem Cell infusion is consistently effective in improving autism behavioral parameters and EEG metrics.  Prodromos, et al. Medicines 2024, 11, x.https://doi.org/10/3390/xxxxx)

 

According to a 2022 Study- MSCs are multipotent stem cells that can differentiate into various tissues (including neuronal cells) and have high replicative capacity. MSCs are neuroprotective and promote neurogenesis and synaptogenesis. Typically derived from cord blood and tissue, they will differentiate based on the recipient’s biological qualities. The combination of cord MSC and cord blood MNC’s may have improved efficacy. Efficacy is seen in measures of reduced inflammation, improved language, sustained attention, and improved EEG brain wave quality. (Villarreal- Martinez, et al, Stem Cell Therapy in the Treatment of Patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder: a Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Stem Cell Rev Rep. 2022; 18:155-164)

 

I have collected data by observation over the past 8 years using various protocols for MSC infusions in more than 50 patients. These cells are acquired from a US tissue bank with high credentials and FDA approval.  

 

While tracking PDDBI scores for approximately 10  patients over the 3-6 months following infusion, we can see the greatest improvement in the social approach/withdrawal subtest with an average gain of 9 T score points (nearly 1 standard deviation of improvement). We did not see a specific improvement in language but in social attempts. The average PDDBI total T score began at 44.9 and dropped to 39.2, a difference of 5.7 points and a statistically significant improvement in this core autistic symptom. While tracking the ATEC scores, the “physical health and physical behavior” subcategory improved most significantly.  Side effects have been minimal and are typically related to the oral sedation required in small children for the IV infusion. 

We acknowledge that MSC infusions are not FDA-approved for treating core autism symptoms. However, many thousands of procedures, tests, drugs, and medical devices are lawful, yet not necessarily  “FDA approved”. Currently, MSCs are falling into this category. 

If you have any questions or to inquire whether an infusion may be right for your child, please fill out our Patient Intake Form found here

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