BY TREATING acute liver failure through
hepatocyte transplantation (transplantation of the liver cells of a foetus), a
team of doctors in Hyderabad claimed a
major breakthrough. The team headed
by C M Habeebullah, prominent gastroenterologist and liver expert, has
developed a new technique to treat people suffering from chronic and acute
liver failure. The project - the first of its
kind in the country - involved 14 terminally ill people out of whom six
patients survived. Habeebullah said that
although the rate of survival was 45 per
cent, more effort should be put into the
project to make it successful.
In the new technique, liver cells of a 13-36 weeks-old foetus are used. These cells can function like a full-fledged liver and help in reviving a failed liver. Studies say that 85 per cent of metabolic activity is retained in these cells for a long duration. With this knowledge, the doctors are isolating, purifying and storing the liver cells at the Centre for Liver Diseases in Hyderabad.
However, there is one problem. As many as 40 foetuses are required to treat one patient and it is extremely difficult to get hold of so many because of the growing number of liver patients in the country, said the doctors.
We are a voice to you; you have been a support to us. Together we build journalism that is independent, credible and fearless. You can further help us by making a donation. This will mean a lot for our ability to bring you news, perspectives and analysis from the ground so that we can make change together.
Comments are moderated and will be published only after the site moderator’s approval. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name. Selected comments may also be used in the ‘Letters’ section of the Down To Earth print edition.