Since the beginning of mankind healing disease has been a permanent concern. The renovation of life and healing have been constant inspirations for research. In this pursuit Paracelsus, a physician in the sixteenth century, issued a thesis that said that heart heals heart, lung heals lung, liver cures liver and in general like heals like. The advent of the 20th century brought biological and medical knowledge never before achieved and early in the century this knowledge was put to work by a dedicated and ever-growing group of physicians mainly in central Europe who were achieving impressive results in an expanding array of pathological conditions and metabolic challenges. Their research had led them to the use of suspensions of fetal animal cells that were transplanted or injected in the muscles or subcutaneous tissues of patients.
This new form of therapy was called "live cell therapy" or, simply, LCT. It is appropriate to know that whatever name the therapy was given, this therapeutic approach rapidly grew in prestige mainly for a single reason: good results. Even when viewed by American orthodox medicine, sound research proves excellent results obtained by this modality. As early as 1970, Trainin and Small showed that an extract of calf thymus conserved immuno-competence on lymphoid cells in mice --an outcome that any experienced live cell therapist could have expected. In 1981, Osbandet al. detailed how ten to seventeen children treated for the immunosuppressive condition called histiocytosis-X underwent complete remissions after being treated with daily intramuscular injections of thymus extract from 5 day old calves. This report appeared in one of the most prestigious periodicals of the United States. In the 1990's US research showed human birth related tissues to be useful in muscular dystrophy and Parkinson's disease. These treatments came under the name of "fetal cell tissue transplantation therapy".
Until the advent of radioactive tracers, live cell therapists could only rely on empirical evidence to prove they were getting results.
Modern research which strongly supports the empirical evidence has come from such ground-breaking research as that of Schmid and Lettre of the University of Heidelberg and Prof. A. Kment, University of Vienna. Dr. Schmid showed in animal tests that immediately following the injection of cell therapy cellular groups and tissues from donor animals are transported in the host's blood to counterpart organs and tissues. Lettre used material tagged with radioactive isotopes --and a Geiger counter-- to prove that cellular material did in fact reach the target organs and tissues. Weiss at Rockefeller Institute conducted experiments which demonstrated the "self-organization" capacity of cells so that information-containing masses of cells become identifiable as tissues --that is, heart cells link to each other to form rhythmically contracting tissue.
Even before the decade of the 1980s, live cell therapists had demonstrated the efficiency of their therapeutic modality in the following diseases, conditions and challenges: Neuromuscular disorders, including epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and muscular dystrophy as well as behavioral disorders.
Genetic and hereditary disorders including mental retardation, Down Syndrome, bone and cartilage abnormalities, and congenital dysplasias also fell within the live cell therapy therapeutic range.
Chronic dermatological disorders, chronic lung disease, heart disease (especially arrhythmia), liver cirrhosis, allergies and autoimmune diseases have all been treated successfully for years with live cell therapy.
And of great importance is the use of live cell therapy as the perfect tool to regenerate and strengthen biological functions that are diminished or damaged by age, abuse, neglect or simply hereditary conditions. For these reasons live cell therapy has been the perfect approach to rejuvenation.
In the early 1980's the Niehans system came to Mexico and with the scientific and technological expertise of IBC Hospital & Medical Center, LCT was moved into a more comprehensive and scientifically sound setting.
In whatever modality live cell therapy is used, the treatments are basically aimed at a combination of regeneration, endocrinological stabilization (hormonal harmonizing) and in general helping to place body chemistry in balance without affecting or damaging normal function.
It is important to note that in live cell therapy it is unlikely that there will be an overdose state --that is, there is no such thing as, for example, pushing a patient into hyperthyroidism through cellular treatments. This is because the function of the cellular material is to “harmonize” or “balance”. Thyroid cellular tissue, then, will “harmonize” an under-functioning or over-functioning thyroid.
While as many as 40 kinds of glandular or tissue cellular suspensions are normally available for live cell therapy, it is rare to give more than seven in one day for a single course of treatment. The selection and combination of cells is part of the science and art of live cell therapy.
The cellular suspensions provide some results which may be felt almost immediately but more typically results become apparent from three to five months later. And as results settle in, patients almost always experience a wide variety of positive responses. Not only do specific pathologies reflect benefits, but such subjective signs as sudden improvement in energy levels, vision, appetite normalization, as well as improved immunological panels and sexual performance are frequently reported. Indeed, the oldest medical document existent, the Eber papyrus (circa 1550 BC), refers to medicinal preparations made from animal organs. We know that as early as 1499 BC a Hindu physician named Susrata recommended the eating of tiger gonads as a way to cure impotence, and that the ancient Chinese prescribed human placentas as a tonic.
There are many references to the therapeutic use of organs in the Materia Medica of Aristotle and Pliny the Elder, and Homer wrote how Achilles consumed the bone marrow of lions in order to stimulate his own strength and bravery. If any single man in this century can claim to be thought of as the actual “father” of live cell therapy, it should be Dr. Alexis Carrell (1873-1944), despite his greater fame as a Nobel Prize winner (development of a new technique for sewing up blood vessels end to end).
Following the pioneering work of Ross Harrison at Johns Hopkins University, Dr. Carrell also successfully refined techniques of tissue culture research. Primarily associated with the Rockefeller Center for Medical Research, Dr. Carrell became intimately involved with the early work on organ transplants, ultimately transplanting a kidney from one cat to another.
His greatest breakthrough, from the cellular therapy aspect, was his project in January 1912 in which he succeeded in transplanting heart tissues from a chick in an invitro culture - and maintaining the culture in a living state for an astonishing 30 years. It was his controversial work in keeping the fragments of a chicken heart alive for many years after the fowl's death that had a particular impact on Paul Niehans, M.D., who later collaborated with the Franco-American surgeon and developed what would later become known as live cell or cellular therapy.
A Niehans disciple who later became the bridge between European live cell therapy and the new era of this approach as pioneered in Mexico has recalled in his own monograph that the technique of injection-implantation was first reported in 1912 by Kuttner but forgotten for a long while. In 1927, Kurtzahn and Hubener published a major work on thyroid implantation by injection in the treatment of mixedematous children. In 1929 Kuttner published on the injection-transplantation of endocrine glands. What Niehans originally did, independent of the earlier research, was in effect to rediscover Kuttner’s procedures, greatly amplify them and develop a comprehensive treatment technique.
Scientific researchers from several countries began working along the lines suggested by Dr. Niehans, and by the mid-1960s papers from investigators in many lands dealing with aspects of cellular therapy were published.
Political and state leaders who received the benefits of cellular therapy have included Konrad Adenauer, Charles DeGaulle, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Sir Winston Churchill, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, Haile Selassi, the monarchs of Morocco and Saudi Arabia, Bernard Baruch, and Joseph Kennedy.
Other notable recipients of the benefits of cellular therapy have included the actors Charlie Chaplin, Robert Cummings, Gloria Swanson and Paulette Goddard; artist Pablo Picasso; playwright Noel Coward; novelist Somerset Maugham, and perhaps the most famous Niehans patient of all -- Pope Pius XII-- who, while dying, summoned Niehans to his bedside for injections and went on to live for four more years. The techniques involved in obtaining and preserving cellular tissue for treatment purposes have been highly refined by IBC Hospital which in the last 15 years has earmarked many of its efforts in bringing this modality to first-class treatment status for the 21st century.
Another aspect of intensive research has been the choosing of the species from which the material is obtained. Sheep have historically been the most frequently used. However, research has shown that in the particular case of treatment for humans the use of calf tissue is more adequate in most instances.
Recent research has shown that in the case of autoimmune disease cells from rabbits could have an important immune stimulating function.
And, of course, using animal rather than human tissue avoids the ethical concerns which currently mar "fetal cell transplantation" research in the USA. A frequently asked question about LCT is whether there are allergic or immune responses to the cellular material.
The answer is no --since birth-related tissue ( embryonic/fetal/placental) are incapable of exciting an immune response (they are “immunologically silent”). Unlike mature cells, which would indeed provoke a potentially fatal allergic reaction, the use of birth-related material causes no recognition of “non-self” by the immune system and, hence, no rejection.
Live cells must either be used immediately or preserved in some manner for future use. Freezing and freeze-drying became the two methods for cell preservation, but the specific manner in which cells are frozen and thawed determines whether they will be viable following storage in the frozen state.
It is now understood that typical freeze-drying not only ruptures cells but inactivates cell recognition receptors and liberates much more antigenic material than from whole cells, and that freezing without cryoprotectants and timed-freezing and thawing techniques alters cells, preventing them from targeting alpha fetoprotein (AFP) and other cellular materials involved in cell transfer and adhesion.
Cell preservation problems have been solved. IBC Hospital has set as a priority the research of modern techniques of cell culture which promise to replace present-day methods of cell preservation. IBC Hospital, in cooperative research with the University of Seoul in Korea, is exploring new techniques to culture and reimplant “self” human cells. The overwhelming evidence of positive clinical and laboratory results has been responsible for the continued presence of live cell therapy as a valuable tool in modernday therapeutics. LCT will certainly be an important part of the medicine of the 21st century. It will evolve to more sophisticated forms, and it will be refined through more state-of -the-art technologies.
The final determination of the value of this form of treatment in a particular case will be the interaction of doctor and patient and the analysis of the patient’s clinical and laboratory findings.
An intelligent interaction and flow of information between the patient and his/her doctor will increasingly provide the best way to select the cases in which this form of therapy can be more effective and promising.
We feel that even better results can be accomplished in individuals with better performance status. We strongly recommend that potential candidates for this or other forms of therapy consider a comprehensive restoration of biological performance through the use of proper nutrition, toxicity avoidance, elimination and antioxidant programs. General well-being is the goal.
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