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Stem cell therapy for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: How far are we from the bench to the bedside?

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DOI: 10.4236/jbise.2013.68A2004    4,261 Downloads   7,143 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is characterized by exuberant apoptosis and inadequate regeneration of lung parenchyma cells. Intratracheal alveolar type II epithelial cell instillation alleviates lung inflammation and fibrosis. Resident lung epithelial stem cells, as well as exogenous mesenchymal stem cells, are capable of differentiating into lung epithelial cells and repair the injured lung. It is thus supposed that, either engraftment of exogenous stem cells, or methods facilitating endogenous lung stem cell proliferation, are promising treatments for IPF, a devastating disease. Arrays of cellular and animal studies have shown the potential of stem cells in alleviating experimental lung fibrosis. Moreover, clinical trials have been launched to investigate the potentials of cell-based therapy in IPF patients. We intend to discuss the newest advances on stem cell therapy in pulmonary fibrosis, particularly the advantages, promises, and possible hurdles to pass from the successes in laboratory experiments to the eventual clinical applications.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Wang, Z. , Zhang, X. , Kang, Y. , Zeng, Y. , Liu, H. , Chen, X. and Ma, L. (2013) Stem cell therapy for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: How far are we from the bench to the bedside?. Journal of Biomedical Science and Engineering, 6, 24-31. doi: 10.4236/jbise.2013.68A2004.

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