The Managing Director of the Pure Flix and the producer of “ God’s Not Dead” Russell Wolfe, who was suffering from ALS for last so many days, recently underwent stem cells treatment for ALS, which is also known as Motor Neuron Disease or Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Wolfe is a Braveheart with an extremely positive mindset, using his sickness for inspiring and motivating others.
Like Wolfe, there are many other people who have been suffering silently from this deadly disease for years. The disease was quite unknown for many people until last August, when the social media was completely bombarded with videos of many known and unknown people accepting the Ice Bucket Challenge for a good cause. ALS or Amyotrophic Lateral Disorder is a progressive neurological disorder affecting control and coordination of the brain and the spinal cord.
The brain is the primary organ, responsible for all the voluntary, involuntary and memory functions occurring in the body. The information from the brain is passed on to the different organs of the body through the spinal cord. This information is coded in the form of a strong electrical signal, passed through a dense network of neurons. Neurons or nerve cells are the main functional units of the brain. They are networked with each other through the formation of projections, signals are passed from one neuron to the other one through these projections. The motor neurons are the neurons that are responsible for the muscular movement of the body. The progressive degeneration of these motor neurons in ALS may eventually lead to muscle atrophy, this will, in turn, affect the ability of the brain to initiate and control muscular movements of the body. As a matter of fact, since the voluntary movements are usually affected, there are chances that patients may get paralyzed in the later stage of the disease. Although the exact cause of the disorder is not completely understood so far, there are many new insights in the development of a new treatment for ALS. With the help of stem cell treatment for ALS, it is now possible to reverse the damage caused by the disorder.
Stem cells are the pristine cells of the body, that are capable of differentiating into many new cells when channelized in the proper direction. These stem cells are present in a dormant state in almost every mature organ of the body, throughout the life of an individual. The body gets them into action in case of an emergency or disease state, wherein new quick regeneration of tissue-specific cells is needed. This remarkable ability of stem cells has been exploited by modern medical science for the treatment of a myriad of unknown debilitating diseases such as ALS.
Stem cells can be extracted from the two most potent known sources of our body, Bone Marrow and Adipose Tissues. These cells can then be enriched in the laboratory under sterile conditions and infused back into the body. Once inside the body, these cells can migrate at the site of injury, to secrete many growth factors and cytokines, that will help in the creation of the microenvironment. This microenvironment can then facilitate speedy regeneration of required tissue-specific cells.
Nowadays, stimulation therapy is also given prior to stem cells treatment to accelerate the process. Thus in case of ALS, regeneration of dead neurons is possible with the help of stem cells treatment to maintain as much as independence and prolong the survival of the individual.
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