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  • Visit to the Summit4StemCell Laboratory

My wife (Andrea Kußmaul-Riempp) and I visited the research laboratory of the Summit4StemCell project in San Diego on 20.11.2014 as representatives of the Förderverein Parkinson-Heilung e.V. (Association for the Promotion of Parkinson’s Healing).
It is based in the Scripps Research Center and is under the leadership of the widely renowned stem-cell researcher Prof. Jeanne Loring, PhD. Prof. Loring and the operational project leader Andres Bratt-Leal, PhD. first explained to us in detail the methods used by them to produce dopamine neurons from skins cells from the patient concerned. We then had the opportunity to view the very impressive laboratory. We were first able to observe the cells taken from the skin of the 8 pilot patients in their original condition under the microscope. As the second step, we then saw the cells after their transformation into pluripotent stem cells. In this condition, the cells divide and multiply quickly. Finally we could admire the cells that had developed into dopamine neurons! These are ready to be implanted into the appropriate brain region of the Parkinson’s patient, where they grow and continuously produce dopamine, through which the movement disturbances typical of Parkinson’s are largely relieved.

In the laboratory (from left: Andres Bratt-Leal, PhD, A.K.-Riempp, G.Riempp)
In the laboratory (from left: Andres Bratt-Leal, G. Riempp, A. Kußmaul-Riempp)
Stem cells under the microscope
Stem cells under the microscope (magnified on the screen)