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Thread: News article about Dr. Barros

  1. #1

    News article about Dr. Barros

    Hi kids.

    A news article about Dr. Barros was published yesterday. I made a translation, without any checking, so forgive me for some errors. You can found the original article here:


    Stem cells gives back sensation to quadriplegic
    Folha de Sao Paulo

    Nervous connections in the spinal cord that seemed to be lost forever had been restored, thanks to the use of the stem cells, in 12 paraplegics and quadriplegics. The study, made by researchers of the USP, however, restored only part of the sensitivity of paralyzed members had years.

    "This opens enormous perspectives", says the orthopedist Tarcisio Barros, 50, of the College of Medicine of the USP. Barros and the coordinator of the study, Erika Kalil Barros, are planning to extend the group of 30 patients that received, in the last year, the infusion of the cells in the injured area. "As each one of the patients received the stem cells at different moments, this not mean that the others cannot present improvements later", affirms the doctor.

    The stem cells is, perhaps, the most versatile components of the human body, capable to assume the function of any cell. These "physiological jokers" are obtained mainly in embryos (variety that seem to be most powerful) and in the bone marrow, in this case called adult stem cells (the variety used by the researchers of the USP. One of the main advantages of this kind of cells is to prevent the rejection, since it is extracted of the person who goes to receive it). However, differently of other similar procedures in the world and Brazil, the researchers had not directly extracted the stem cells from bone marrow.

    Attracted battalion

    Instead of this, the team, with the aid of the doctors Dalton Chamone and Alfredo Mendroni, "attracted" the stem cells for the sanguineous chain of the patients using specific substances and, later, used a procedure - similar to hemodialisis - to remove them from the blood (it sees picture above, to the right). They had gotten a true battalion of them, about 2,5 million for each kilogram of blood of the patients.

    After being storaged for some time in low temperatures, the cells had been returned to the patients. "All the patients were in a stabilized situation, no motricity [ movement ] and no sensitivity", Barros affirms.

    With the aid of Jose Guillermo Caldas and Giovanni Cerri, of the Interventionist Department of Vascular Radiology of the College of Medicine of the USP, the researchers had used devices of magnetic resonance to identify the accurate place of the injury in the spinal cord and to lead the stem cell to there, through the artery that irrigated it.

    In of some months (in a period that is variant from patient to patient), they conditions started to change. The scientists had applied the test of evoked potential, that measure the effect of an electric stimulaton in the body on the cerebral cortex.

    Before, says Barros, all the patients had an imperfection in this circuit, caused by the injury in the spinal cord, that hindered the communication with the brain. In the 12 that improved they condition, however, the stimulaton goes ahead, as if the connection was restored. More than this: part of sensitivity has returned.

    For the psychologist and advertising executive Mara Gabrilli, 36, quadriplegic for nine years, consequence of a car accident, this meant a thing, in the begin: "Pain! I started to feel excessively pain in my butt and in my legs, when I make electric stimulation".

    On the other hand, the touch sensation also resurged, and she says that feels more "physically strong". "It's wonderful", affirms Gabrilli, that co-ordinates the Project Next Step, a non-governamental organization that gives support to disabled people and the research with stem cells. The couch of olimpic gymnastics Georgette Vidor, paraplegic, also passed for similar positive changes after participating of the therapy.

    Despite the good results, there are many questions to answer. The researchers still do not know, for example, if the stem cells are transforming into neurons and then reconstitute the bridge between the non injuried areas of the spinal cord, or if they only stimulate the passage of nervous impulses.

    "In any way, when you know that the impulse is passing, you can use auxiliary boardings, as drugs that stimulate the transmission, for example", say Barros.

    For now, the objective of the researchers is to follow the patients who had received the cells and also to apply the technique in people who had accute injuries in the spinal cord. "In this case, we imagine that the recovery possibility is bigger", affirms the researcher of the USP. The protocol for this new study already is approved by the CONEP (National Commission of Ethics in Research).

    The results of the first group of patients will be presented in the Stem Cells International Meeting, that will occut in Sao Paulo in next thursday 13, and will be published soon.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Schmeky's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    West Monroe, LA, USA
    Thanks Walid!

    Your translation is excellent, I understood it completely. Sounds encouraging. Please keep us updated.

  3. #3
    Thanks for keeping us informed Sadikuz.

    "In any way, when you know that the impulse is passing, you can use auxiliary boardings, as drugs that stimulate the transmission, for example", say Barros.
    Is she referring to 4-AP?

  4. #4
    Senior Member kngtreeman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    naples florida usa


    thanks for posting this.every once in a while my mood need a + boost.

    scott r

  5. #5

    I have no idea which kind of drug Dr. Barros is referring... anyway, I'll try to watch the presentation next thursday and figure out this information.


    God bless the dreamers

  6. #6
    Hello, boys.

    I found some additional info about the "INTERNATIONAL MEETING ON STEM CELLS - Applications and Implications of Advances in Stem Cells Biology" in Sao Paulo, tomorrow. The full document (in portuguese, some parts in english) is available in

    Here is a Brief summary:

    The meeting will occur in days 13, 14 and 15, and will participate national and international researchers, like:

    * Prof. DAVID BRYNMOR THOMAS of Bute Medical School - University of St. Andrews - United Kingdom
    * Prof. Dr. Tarcisio Eloy Pessoa de Barros Filho - Dept. of Orthopedy and Traumatology - Medicine College - USP
    * Prof. CLIVE NIELS SVENDSEN of Waisman Center - University of Wisconsin - Madison - USA - Director of the Stem Cell Research Program.
    * Dra. Erika Meirelles Kalil Pessoa de Barros - Brazilian Society of Studies in Spinal Cord Injury - SOBRALEM
    * Eng. Tomaz Puga Leivas - Latin American Society of Biomaterials and Artificial Organs - SLABO

    and others.

    The list of lectures is a bit long, but I selected some that maybe will be interesting for us:

    November 13:

    Prof. Dr. Tarcisio Eloy Pessoa de Barros - DOT - FMUSP
    (30 minutes for lecture and 10 minutes for questions)

    Prof. Dr. Mayana Zats - IB-USP
    (30 minutes for lecture and 10 minutes for questions)

    Coordinator: Prof. Dr. Tarcisio Eloy Pessoa de Barros - DOT - FMUSP
    (30 minutes for lecture and 10 minutes for questions)

    November 14:

    10h50 - 12h00: STEM CELL PLASTICITY
    Coordinator: Prof. Dr. Liberato John Alphonse Di Dio - UNISA / FFM
    (40 minutes for lecture and 10 minutes for questions)

    Coordinator: Prof. Dr. Wagner Farid Gattaz - DPq-FMUSP
    (30 minutes for lecture and 10 minutes for questions)

    Hey, Rebechi, will you watch the lecture tomorrow? You can do it and make a summary for us!

    God bless the dreamers

  7. #7
    Thanks Walid, for the excellent translation. It sounds encouraging.


  8. #8
    Hello, people.

    Last nigth, I saw a video about the international meeting in Sao Paulo. Today, I found it in the Web. Unafortunatelly, he is in a restricted area of the site, so, before watch it, you'll need to type a valid user name and password. You can use my login:

    User : surubion (must be in lower case)
    Password: 9909

    The link is:

    The video, of course, is in portuguese. Here come the translation of what the video says.

    []s for all
    God bless the dreamers


    The first practical results of research with stem cells are been presented in Sao Paulo. Science investigates the secrets of these cells capable to substitute parts and functions in the organism.

    13/11/2003 - A NEW HOPE

    Every day, Paulo de Tarso prepares himself for a very special moment - to do some steps. They were unthinkeable in the last five years, when he broked the spine in a motorcycle accident.

    "Today, to walk is the most important thing for me, I want to arrive from this wheelchair, walk until the glass, walk by myself - this is my dream", says the businessman.

    The dream became possible thanks to a clinical trial with stem cells, that Paulo de Tarso initiated 1 year ago.

    Stem Cells are in the group of most versatile components of the body. They are found in embryos and in the bone marrow of adults. They can assume the function of any weave.

    In case of Paulo de Tarso, stem cells, taked from the bone marrow, were injected through the blood and replaced, in the injury area, the cells affected by the accident.

    He not only recovered the sensibility in the legs, that now react, by example, to electric impulses. He can now, by the first time, move then a little - including the foot.

    In case of Paulo de Tarso, the treatment with injections of stem cells brought good results in a period of time considered very short. But the doctors and specialists notify: this is not a miracle, is not a magic cure.

    Reunited in a congress about stem cells in Sao Paulo, specialists of several areas from the medicine warned out that the noticeable advancements should be seen carefully.

    "These results open the perspective that we can have some hope, but still does not represent solutions. It is going to be part of a small piece of a big jigsaw puzzle that still must be solved," the orthopedic surgeon Tarcisio Barros says.

    This is true for the science and for Paulo de Tarso: big progresses are made by many small steps.

    "I'll walk again, I don't know when, but I will walk again by myself", guarantees Paulo.

    During the meeting in Sao Paulo, the scientists took advantage to ask to the government that facilitates the researches with stem cells in Brazil. They consider that the Brazilian legislation complicates the development of the sector.

    [This message was edited by Wise Young on 11-17-03 at 09:47 AM.]

  9. #9
    Senior Member Leo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Yankton, South Dakota
    Thank you Walid.

    "All you have to decide is what to do with the time that is given you."
    Gandolf the Gray

  10. #10
    I forgot to say: If anybody here knows how I can capture the video for a local file in my machine, please, tell me...

    Leo, my pleasure.

    God gless the dreamers

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