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28 September, 2021 News

Researchers at the Advanced Therapies Unit of the IDCBIS (District Institute of Science, Biotechnology and Innovation in Health) are making progress in the research on the biology of the mesenchymal cells and its possible applications in medicine that allow to improve the quality of life of patients with different conditions, since it has been observed that they modulate adverse reactions in different diseases, especially in degenerative and autoimmune diseases.

Mesenchymal cells regenerate and repair damaged tissues and replace cells that routinely die, they are characterized by a great capacity for expansion and differentiation, which allows them to renew themselves easily and give rise to various cell types, such as bone, adipose and cartilage cells; they also have the capacity for tissue regeneration, aiding healing, preventing cell death and facilitating the formation of new blood vessels.

The IDCBIS laboratories are researching and evaluating the potential of mesenchymal stem cells, which are extracted from umbilical cords donated by Colombian mothers, to reduce inflammation and regulate the activity of immune system cells in multiple diseases.

In addition, tissue engineering research is focused on the generation of structures that support mesenchymal stem cells for the regeneration/repair of skin (burns and ulcers), bone (fractures and bone loss) and cartilage (osteoarthritis).

At the same time, simulation models are being developed using mesenchymal cells to recreate metabolic diseases of genetic origin and thus evaluate the efficacy of the drugs used in these pathologies.

Currently the only approved treatment in the world is the transplantation of blood-forming cells present in the bone marrow or in peripheral blood taken from a donor or from the patient himself. Other treatments involving the use of stem cells, as in the research carried out at IDCBIS, are in the experimental phase.

This research project, among others currently being developed at IDCBIS, is being carried out under the leadership of the Institute's Director, Dr. Bernardo Camacho, who was recently re-elected as the Institute's leader by unanimous vote of the Board of Directors, composed of the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, the Universidad Nacional, the Universidad de Los Andes, the Instituto Nacional de Cancerología and the Alcaldía Mayor de Bogotá - Secretaría Distrital de Salud together with the integrated health services sub-networks: Centro Oriente, Sur Occidente and Norte.



28 September, 2021 News0

The DarCélulas program is a possible hope for patients in need of blood-forming cell transplantation, also known as bone marrow transplantation.

● DarCélulas already has more than 2,300 people registered in Bogotá.
● From now on, interested parties living in Medellín, Cali and Barranquilla will also be able to register.

Seven out of ten patients with severe blood diseases who need a transplant do not find a compatible donor in their family, so it is necessary to look for a match in genetically similar people even if they do not have a blood link. That is the challenge of DarCélulas: to create the database of potential donors who could save the lives of patients with serious blood diseases.

DarCélulas, led by the District Institute of Science, Biotechnology and Innovation in Health (IDCBIS), was born in 2019 within the framework of the Project "National Registry of Hematopoietic Progenitor Cells Donors in Colombia" with funding from the Science, Technology and Innovation Fund of the General System of Royalties and the District Administration of Bogota.

The program is in the pilot phase and already has more than 2,300 people enrolled, being the first program in Colombia in which potential donors of blood-forming cells to patients with serious diseases such as lymphoma, aplasia, among others, are registered.It is important to clarify that people who join the registry may not donate cells, as they will only be called if a genetically compatible patient requires the transplant.

"This registry is a life option for hundreds of Colombians who in the future may need a bone marrow transplant, today correctly called hematopoietic progenitor cell transplant. Valuable cells circulate in each of their veins and provide hope for others." said Dr. Bernardo Camacho, Director of IDCBIS.

In this phase of the project, the registration of potential donors and their genetic typing is carried out so that when the project becomes viable, search processes for patients can be activated.

This type of initiative is already being carried out in other countries such as Japan, New Zealand and the United States. In Latin America it has been carried out in Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Uruguay.

The experience of creating the registry in Bogota has shown that the majority of people interested in being part of the database are women (73%). In terms of their profiles, 40% are regular blood or apheresis donors, 8% are relatives of people with serious blood diseases, and 52% are the general population.

Until now, registration was only available for the capital city of the country, but from now on, interested parties residing in Medellin, Barranquilla and Cali will also be able to register. The registration process is safe and fast. To learn more you can access

Logo a color IDCBIS Centro de investigación reconocido por minciencias r-1763-2021


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