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Autism Treatment through Stem Cells

Date (2015-02-20)

Over the past couple of decades, there have been significant changes in the autism prevalence and progression all over the world. The condition is now affecting almost one in 60 children as compared to one in 200, back by the year 2000. Lack of interests, reduced social interests or engagements are the key risk markers associated with the disorder. On a generalized note, the onset of the autism occurs in the mother’s womb itself, however, most of the children will start showing symptoms before 3 years of their age. These symptoms may not be responding  to their name or not pointing at the objects to indicate their interests, etc. The rehabilitative approach such as improved communication, physiotherapy, improvement in concentration etc. are only used as a current treatment regime. Although these methods are just a temporary solution and not the permanent alternatives.

Autism is the developmental disorder, of brain development.  Although the characteristic symptoms associated with the disorders are variable, they are mainly difficulties in social interactions, problems in verbal and nonverbal communications and repetitive unusual behavior. There is not a single cause of autism that can be pinpointed. Scientists have identified that variety of genetic mutations and environmental factors are responsible for the same in combination. The clearest evidences of autism risk factors takes into account events during the time of the birth, such as advanced parental age at the time of conception, certain illnesses during pregnancy, deprivation of oxygen, vitamin and folic deficiency etc.

Unfortunately, none of the current treatment approach could address the root cause of oxygen deprivation and other inflammatory troubles, although stem cells can. According to the research and clinical trials that are taking place worldwide, doctors could now possibly say that stem cells can regulate the immunological obligations of the body and reverse the damage. Stem cells are the master cells of the body, that can be differentiated into any kind of cells as and when required. This remarkably unique ability of stem cells has been exploited by the medical science to treat a variety of degenerative disorders including autism. These magical cells remain dormant in the mature organs throughout the life of an individual. The technology has allowed to extract these cells from any of the known organs, most commonly Bone Marrow or Adipose Tissue. These cells are processed in the laboratory for the enrichment and can be re infused back into the body of the individual. The entire procedure can be completed in two different steps, firstly doctors will stimulate the body to be prepared for further actions. This will allow the secretion of growth factors and cytokines to create a microenvironment that will help the resident stem cells to multiply and start differentiation and secondly the supplementary dose of stem cells is given to boost the process of regenerations.

Up till now many people are not aware of the stem cells as the possible therapeutic approach, however internet and scientific publications are full of their positive benefits on treating disorders like Autism.

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