Osaka University conducts world's 1st iPS transplant for corneal disease
Japan Today -- Aug 30
A research team from a Japanese university said Thursday it conducted the world's first transplant of corneal tissues using induced pluripotent stem cells, or iPS cells, in July.

Osaka University's team led by Koji Nishida may have created a new treatment for those suffering from corneal diseases, as current treatment involves waiting for corneal donations, which have been insufficient in Japan.

Around 1,600 people are waiting for such donations, it said.

The female patient in her 40s, who suffered from corneal epithelial stem cell deficiency, was discharged from the hospital last week. So far there are no problems and her eyesight has improved, according to the team.

The disease is caused by losing cells in the eye that produce the cornea due to illness or injury, leading to worsening eyesight and loss of vision.

In the surgery conducted July 25, the team transplanted in her left eye extremely thin sheet-like corneal tissues produced from another individual's iPS cells, that had been stored at Kyoto University.

The team believes that one transplant should remain effective throughout a patient's life.

News source: Japan Today
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