Breakthrough of Crohn's Trial Could Offer Curative Treatment to 620,000 Disease Victims


Patients with Crohn's disease must have the chance to see their immune cells "reprogrammed" to defeat chronic intestinal disease.

A clinical trial is to begin at Guy's and St Thomas's NHS within six months of a discovery of the lab by its researchers.

They found a way to collect white blood cells from Crohn's patients and adapt them to behave more like cells of healthy people.

It is hoped that these adapted cells can be reinjected to patients, thereby reducing inflammation and relieving symptoms. There is also hope that this could potentially offer a cure for a disease that affects about 620,000 Britons.

Professor Graham Lord, Principal Investigator, said, "This is the next frontier of cell therapy, as we go beyond treating the symptoms of Crohn's disease and attempting to reset the immune system to address it. .

"It's a real home-made treatment, in the sense that we started by observing cells and tissues donated by Guy and St Thomas patients, developed a treatment, and start now. to undertake trials, all at the trust. " Tribute Trial will go beyond the successful lab tests, published in the journal Gastroenterology, to determine whether the treatment is safe and effective for the treatment of Crohn's disease.

The disease is a life-long illness that causes severe inflammation of parts of the digestive system, causing symptoms such as diarrhea, stomach upset, fatigue and weight loss. Its causes are unknown, but we know that the immune system plays a role.

Rachel Sawyer, a 50-year-old Anerley Crohn's patient, said, "Anything that could help Crohn's people have the confidence to regain the status of a person for whom they were destined would change the game." Cell therapy involves restoring healthy levels of a protein found in the intestine called α4β7 integrin. The adapted cells are then returned to the patients by intravenous infusion.

Dr. Peter Irving, Gastroenterology Consultant and co-author of the research paper, said people would be offered the opportunity to participate in the clinical trial "in the very near future".

He added: "Although the treatments available for Crohn's have increased in recent years, they only work in certain patients. In addition, treatments have potentially serious side effects in some patients. This research paves the way for a test. "

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