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Dr. Allison Bradley

 Dr. Allison Bradley is investigating the use of stem-cell therapy to treat chronic liver disease in dogs, a novel approach they hope could lead to successful treatments for dogs and people.

Stem Cell Therapy

Stem Cells for Liver Disease

Researchers in the CIRM in the Department of Clinical Sciences are evaluating new stem cell therapy based treatments for chronic and end-stage liver disease in dogs, with the ultimate goal of developing regenerative medicine approaches for liver disease in both humans and dogs. Investigations are also currently underway with induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) for liver disease, in conjunction with investigators at the Gates Center for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Colorado Denver.

Current Studies

  • Mesenchymal stem cells for treatment of liver disease in dogs.
    A clinical trial is currently underway at the CIRM and the CSU VTH to evaluate the effectiveness of mesenchymal stem cells for treatment of dogs with chronic liver disease. The study will assess the safety and efficacy of a series of injections of MSC in dogs with biopsy confirmed liver disease. Program faculty: Dr. Allison Bradley, Dr. Steven Dow, Dr. David Twedt, Dr. Tracy Webb

Stem Cells for Chronic Kidney Disease in Cats

CIRM investigators are studying the effects of mesenchymal stem cells on the progression of chronic kidney disease in cats.  The studies aim to determine whether MSC can slow the progression of kidney disease by suppressing inflammation in the kidneys and by stimulating the growth of new blood vessels.

Current Studies

  • Mesenchymal stem cells for feline chronic kidney disease.
    A clinical trial is currently underway to determine whether a series of IV injections of MSC is effective in improving kidney function in cats with chronic kidney disease.  The study is enrolling cats with stable CKD in a randomized clinical trial conducted at the CIRM and the CSU VTH.  Program faculty:  Dr. Jessica Quimby, Dr. Steven Dow, Dr. Tracy Webb

​Stem Cells for Bone Healing

Researchers in the Animal Cancer Center are using mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) to enhance bone healing following surgery or radiation therapy for bone cancer, with the ultimate goal of improving treatment outcomes in children and dogs with bone cancer.

Current Studies

  • Effects of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) on incorporation of massive cortical allografts following limb salvage surgery.
    Studies are being conducted to determine how MSC derived from adipose tissues or bone marrow can be used to stimulate the incorporation of bone grafts into large fracture gaps after bone resection for bone cancer, using mouse models and dogs with cancer. Program Faculty: Drs. Nicole Ehrhart, Stewart Ryan, and Jamie Custis
  • Safety and efficacy of MSC for revitalizing bone following radiation injury
    Studies are being done to determine how to MSC can be used safely to improve the viability of bone following radiation therapy for cancer, using mouse and rat tumor and radiation models. Program Faculty: Drs. Nicole Ehrhart, Stewart Ryan, Jamie Custis, and Susan LaRue

Stem Cells for Joint and Ligament Healing

Faculty in the Equine Orthopaedic Research Center are investigating the use of mesenchymal stem cells to stimulate cartilage and ligament healing and to enhance tissue healing following sports-related injuries in horses.

Current Studies

  • Stem cell transfection with IL-1Ra to stimulate healing of cartilage and tendon injuries
    Investigators in the EORC are studying the effects of joint injection with MSC transfected to over-express the equine IL-1Ra gene in order to suppress joint inflammation and stimulate cartilage healing, using experimental and clinical equine models. Program Faculty: Drs. Laurie Goodrich, David Frisbe, and Wayne MacIlwraith
  • Effects of in vitro differentiation on MSC resistance to compressive forces as a model for cartilage healing
    The use of MSC offers the potential to one day regenerate new cartilage to repair chronic joint injuries in horses and humans. To help develop new MSC-based therapies, researchers in the EORC are using in vitro assays with MSC and growth factors and substrates to assess the impact of these factors on differentiation of MSC into functional chondrocytes. Program Faculty: Drs. David Kisiday, David Frisbe, and Wayne MacIlwraith

Stem Cells for Treatment of Feline Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Investigators in the CIRM are assessing the effects of mesenchymal stem cell infusions on inflammatory bowel disease in cats, with the goal of determining whether IV injections of MSC can suppress inflammation in the bowel and improve the clinical disease course in cats with inflammatory bowel disease.

Current Studies

  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells for feline inflammatory bowel disease. An open clinical trial is being conducted to assess the safety and potential efficacy of mesenchymal stem cell injections for cats with inflammatory bowel disease, in a study being conducted at the CIRM and the CSU VTH. Program faculty: Dr. Craig Webb, Dr. Tracy Webb

Stem Cells for Immune Modulation of Asthma

Studies are underway to investigate whether intravenous injection of MSC can be used as a novel method of suppressing airway inflammation in asthma. These studies are being conducted in collaboration with researchers at National Jewish Hospital in Denver and at the University of Missouri School of Veterinary Medicine. Program faculty: Drs. Steven Dow, Tracy Webb, Katsuyuki Takeda (National Jewish), Erwin Gelfand (National Jewish), Carol Reinero (University of Missouri)

Current Studies

  • Colleagues at the University of Missouri (Reinero) are investigating whether IV infusions of mesenchymal stem cells can improve lung function and reduce inflammation in cats with allergen induced asthma.

Stem Cells for Improved Cardiac Valves

Investigators in the Cardiovascular Research Laboratory at the Animal Heart Center at CSU are studying new approaches to improve the durability and reduce the immunogenicity of replacement heart valves. One of these approaches includes the use of autologous MSC to improve valve properties

Current Studies

  • New approaches to preparation of porcine cardiac valves to improve immune and mechanical properties
    These studies are investigating novel methods of preparing cardiac valves to suppress long-term immune rejection of allograft valves, along with improved incorporation of MSC into valve connective tissues to improve their strength and reduce immune rejection. Program Faculty: Drs. Chris Orton and Jan Bright
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