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Stem Cell Therapy for Exotic Animals

Often exotic animals in captivity or in animal sanctuaries suffer from many of the same chronic ailments as humans and companion animals, including osteoarthritis and chronic infections.  Treatment for these conditions is often difficult due to the necessity of delivering daily medications.  For this reason, stem cell therapy, which can induce long-lasting improvements from a single treatment, is an attractive option for treating these patients.  In addition, our group at the CIRM has developed new techniques for generating stem cells from blood of most exotic species, which makes procuring stem cells for treatment much simpler.

Stem cell therapy for osteoarthritis in exotic species 

  • EligibilityExotic animals in zoos or sanctuaries around the US are eligible for entry into the study.  Each patient must have documented evidence of OA, based either on radiographs or careful physical examinations.  Access to a peripheral vein for collection of an initial blood sample, and for administration of the stem cells is essential. Interested exotic animal facilities should contact Dr. Valerie Johnson (Valerie.Johnson@colostate.edu). 

Stem cell therapy for chronic infections 

  • Eligibility: Exotic animals in zoos or sanctuaries around the US are eligible for entry into the study.  Each patient must have documented evidence of chronic infection, based on culture results and careful wound examination and documentation.  Access to a peripheral vein for collection of an initial blood sample, and for administration of the stem cells is essential.  Interested exotic animal facilities should contact Dr. Valerie Johnson (Valerie.Johnson@colostate.edu​​). 

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