Millions of Americans have chronic kidney disease. Hundreds of thousands will progress to end stage kidney disease requiring either dialysis or kidney transplant. But research is underway to keep people from reaching that point.
“Our goal is to take a look at how we can repair the diabetic kidney in terms of delaying the rate of progression of kidney failure,” says LaTonya Hickson, M.D., a Mayo Clinic nephrologist.
Dr. Hickson is part of the research team looking at using stem cells to help regenerate failing kidneys.
“We take these cells from our abdominal fat and we can inject them back into the body for them to do good,” says Dr. Hickson. “They basically tell the kidney or other organ systems that are impaired to wake up and get back to work and help heal that organ system.”
While there’s a lot more research ahead, Dr. Hickson is excited about the possibilities.
Listen to the Mayo Clinic Radio Health Minute and learn more about stem cells and chronic kidney disease in the video below: