Cell Therapy: A New Hope for Asthma Treatment

Asthma, a chronic respiratory condition, affects millions of people worldwide. Despite advances in treatment and early comprehensive management approaches, it remains a debilitating ailment for many individuals.

In Colombia, it is estimated that 1 in every 8 people suffers from asthma. It is considered the second most prevalent chronic respiratory disease, following Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

Asthma typically manifests during early childhood, and its greatest impact becomes evident in old age, after years of cumulative lung damage.

Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), also known as multipotent stromal cells, can be extracted from a wide variety of human tissues. They are characterized by their proliferation and differentiation capabilities, which have drawn the attention of the medical and scientific community. Researchers seek alternatives for patients affected by a range of conditions and diseases.

“There is ample scientific evidence demonstrating the immunomodulatory capacity of MSCs,” explains Dr. Carlos Escobar, Scientific Director at Trustem. This capacity explains the documented benefits of MSC use in severe COVID-19 cases and the positive outcomes observed in animal models of asthma. These findings have been corroborated in tests involving patients affected by this disease.

Recent studies have shown that MSCs can modulate the response of both the innate and adaptive immune systems. This includes modifying the functioning of various cell lineages, such as macrophages and lymphocytes. Ultimately, this stable modulation contributes to the bronchial inflammatory response—a fundamental phenomenon in asthma exacerbations.

Dr. Escobar’s insights highlight the potential of regenerative medicine, particularly MSCs, in addressing asthma and improving patient outcomes.

Although research on the use of stem cells for asthma treatment is still in its early stages, there are reasons to be optimistic about their potential to assist patients with this chronic disease. According to the Scientific Director of Trustem, further studies are needed to better understand how stem cells can be effectively utilized in asthma treatment. Clinical evaluation of this alternative should progress, and it might even lead to the use of cell derivatives instead of the cells themselves