Advantages and challenges of stem cell therapy for osteoarthritis (Review)
- Stephanie Jyet Quan Loo
- Nyet Kui Wong
Affiliations: Division of Applied Biomedical Sciences and Biotechnology, School of Health Sciences, International Medical University, Kuala Lumpur 57000, Malaysia
- Published online on: June 10, 2021 https://doi.org/10.3892/br.2021.1443
Copyright: © Loo
et al. This is an open access article distributed under the
terms of Creative
Commons Attribution License.
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Osteoarthritis (OA) is a degenerative disorder of the cartilage and is one of the leading causes of disability, particularly amongst the elderly, wherein patients with advanced‑stage OA experience chronic pain and functional impairment of the limbs, thus resulting in a significantly reduced quality of life. The currently available treatments primarily revolve around symptom management, and is thus palliative rather than curative. The aim of the present review is to briefly discuss the limitations of some of the currently available treatments for patients with OA, and highlight the value of the potential use of stem cells in cellular therapy, which is widely regarded as the breakthrough that can address the present unmet medical needs for treatment of degenerative diseases, such as OA. The advantages of stem cell therapy, particularly mesenchymal stem cells, and the challenges involved are also discussed in this review.