Implanted cow cells ease the pain

Implanted-cow-cells-east-the-painPublished in: New Scientist

On: August 3, 1996

“Doctors in Switzerland have helped to relieve the pain of six terminally ill patients by implanting live cultured cells from the adrenal glands of cows into their spines. The cells produce a cocktail of natural painkillers, which may cause fewer side effects than drugs such as morphine.

The implants contain chromaffin cells, which secrete adrenaline and noradrenaline and are thought to play a role in animals’ “fight or flight” response to danger. But they also produce a cocktail of natural painkillers, such as catecholamines, enkephalins, neurotensin and somatostatin. The experiment was carried out by researchers from the University of Lausanne, Switzerland, and Brown University and the biopharmaceutical company Cytotherapeutics, both based in Providence, Rhode Island.”

 

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