Ophthalmology: MukoCell® Offers Hope for Patients with Limbus Stem Cell Insufficiency
Injuries, eye disorders, and autoimmune diseases can damage limbus stem cells, leading to the dreaded Limbus Stem Cell Insufficiency (LSCI), which can result in blindness. Limbus stem cells play a crucial role in renewing the corneal epithelium and maintaining vision. However, when these stem cells fail, vision loss is imminent. For patients with bilateral Limbus Stem Cell Insufficiency, conventional stem cell transplantation is not an option, as they lack healthy eyes from which stem cells could be harvested. But now, there is new hope: lab-cultivated oral mucosa epithelium has proven to be an amazing substitute for the cornea, promoting Limbus region regeneration and preventing scarring. This method allows for corneal area transplants, which were previously impossible, and requires less oral mucosa. Patients with unilateral Limbus Stem Cell Insufficiency can avoid procedures on the healthy eye. The MukoCell® product, originally developed for urethral stricture treatment, consists of autologous oral mucosa cells and a biodegradable carrier matrix to avoid rejection reactions. MukoCell GmbH has already successfully treated 4 eyes of 3 LSCI patients with the oral mucosa transplant. Chief Physician Prof. Dr. Kakkassery of the Department of Ophthalmology in Chemnitz states, “The results of the clinical trial were very promising. The MukoCell® transplant was easily feasible, and there were no side effects. One of the patients could be followed up for over 60 months and showed very stable findings.” MukoCell technology promises vision and a better future for patients with Limbus Stem Cell Insufficiency, including victims of eye burns and other conditions. MukoCell® is more than a medication for innovative therapies; it is life-changing hope for those who once faced blindness. This medical approach promises to restore quality of life and make the impossible possible.