In honor of today being National Trivia day, we thought that we would provide a few facts on stem cell therapy and their history! Dr. Kelly Cunningham of Austin Ortho + Bio in Austin, Texas has been the leader in regenerative sports medicine and orthopedic medicine. If you have more questions, call us today at 512.410.0767.
Interesting Facts You May Not Know About Current and Past Stem Cell Research
Learn about both the past and current state of affairs in stem cell research below.
- Stem Cell Basics
Before you dive into the world of stem cell research, brush up on the basics with a visit here. It is a page offered by the National Institutes of Health and answers questions from what stem cells are to treatments. You can also read their latest reports online concerning the topic.
- Early Days
Although hotly contested, embryonic stem cell research has been going on for decades. However, in 2001, adult stem cell research was only a few years old.
- Adult Stem Cells vs. Embryonic Stem Cells
While the debate on how to harvest stem cells centers mostly on who and how you get them, the results between embryonic and adult stem cells shows a difference according to the Institute of Science in Society.
- Pluripotent Stem Cells
One of the biggest issues for embryonic stem cells over adult stem cells is that they are pluripotent. This means they have the potential to differentiate into almost any cell in the body, and under the right circumstances, a stem cell that is isolated from an embryo can produce almost all of the cells in the body.
- Pluripotent Adult Stem Cells
But wait, there’s more. In 2007, Dr. Shinya Yamanaka of Kyoto University may have found an alternative. Along with a group at the University of Wisconsin, they announced they had successfully turned adult skin cells into the equivalent of human embryonic stem cells without using an actual embryo.
- Adult Stem Cell Deaths Show Urgency
This is the title of a commentary featured on “Wired.” In it, he shares how there have been 3,629 American deaths associated with bone marrow transplant treatments and adult stem cells. The risks of graft versus host disease and other related topics are also shared.
- Adult Stem Cells Saved my Life
In a rebuttal to the above, CNS News tells the true stories of those who were helped by adult stem cell treatment. They involve everyone from a car accident victim to someone with sickle cell anemia. There is even a report on someone who was helped after four heart attacks.
- Third Source of Stem Cells
An embryo or adult aren’t the only two places one can get stem cells. Blood used from the umbilical cord made during pregnancies is also a good source. And the results can be impressive. In 2006, researchers at the University of Minnesota announced they were able to largely reverse the effects of strokes in lab rats using stem cells found in human umbilical cord blood.
Meet Dr. Kelly Cunningham
Sports can be rough on joints and cartilage, especially shoulders, knees, and hips. Kelly Cunningham, MD, has cared for many young and mature athletes whose joints take a beating day in and day out. He welcomes patients from Austin, Texas, and its surrounding communities to experience the cutting-edge technology and skill offered by his team at Austin Ortho + Biologics.
Dr. Cunningham works with each athlete to develop an individual treatment plan that emphasizes the least invasive treatments possible with a goal of minimal recuperation and downtime. He combines rigorous standards and quality of care with experience and insight, integrating the best new techniques into the care of each patient.
His patients have included skilled athletes in football, basketball, baseball, and hockey, including members of the Dallas Cowboys at their Austin training camp, Austin Ice Bats hockey players, Southwestern University athletes, and many other colleges and high school athletes. He served for 15 years as a traveling team physician for the men’s alpine downhill US OlympicSki Team, providing on-the-hill medical race coverage in North America and Europe, including qualifying races for the Winter Olympics.
As a sports medicine specialist, Dr. Cunningham also treats many seasoned weekend warriors such as runners, skiers (downhill, snowboard, and water), and tennis and golf enthusiasts.
After medical school and residency training in Dallas, he completed a sports medicine/knee fellowship with renowned orthopedic specialist Dr. Richard Steadman in Vail, Colorado, and underwent further shoulder training in England and Canada.
While with Dr. Steadman, the originator of the popular microfracture cartilage treatment technique, he developed a strong interest in the care of cartilage injuries and now has more than 20 years of experience with surgical microfracture and related procedures. In recent years, he has closely monitored cutting-edge techniques as they’re developed for use in these acute and chronic problems.