Stem Cells Treatment Helped A Paralyzed Man Regain Upper Body Movement

Stem Cells Treatment Helped A Paralyzed Man Regain Upper Body Movement

In March of 2016, Kristopher (Kris) Boesen was suffering a traumatic injury to his cervical spine after his vehicle fishtailed on a wet road, which made the car crash into a tree and then into a telephone pole. Unfortunately, that accident left him paralyzed from the neck down. Doctors warned his parents that he might never regain motor control.

They also said that he might qualify for an experimental new procedure, which would involve stem cells, and could repair some of the damage.

They went for it, and, so, in April, Charles Liu, MD, Ph.D., director of the USC Neurorestoration Center, in collaboration with Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center and Keck Medicine of USC, started the procedure.

They injected an experimental dose of ten million AST-OPC1 cells directly into Kris’ cervical spinal cord.

As Liu explained:

“Typically, spinal cord injury patients undergo surgery that stabilizes the spine but generally does very little to restore motor or sensory function. With this study, we are testing a procedure that may improve neurological function, which could mean the difference between being permanently paralyzed and being able to use one’s arms and hands. Restoring that level of function could significantly improve the daily lives of patients with severe spinal injuries.”

After two weeks, Kris started to show signs of improvement, and two months later he was able to feed himself, use his phone, write his name down, operate a motorized wheelchair and hug his loved ones.

Liu adds:

“As of 90 days post-treatment, Kris has gained significant improvement in his motor function, up to two spinal cord levels. In Kris’ case, two spinal cord levels mean the difference between using your hands to brush your teeth, operate a computer or do other things you wouldn’t otherwise be able to do, so having this level of functional independence cannot be overstated.”

Kris has a passion for fixing up and driving sports cars. Before the accident, he was studying to become a life insurance broker. As he says:

“All I’ve wanted from the beginning was a fighting chance. But if there’s a chance for me to walk again, then heck yeah! I want to do anything possible to do that.”


That new, experimental medical branch is proving the immense value of neurorestoration and regenerative medicine. Although doctors are hesitant to predict Boesen’s future improvement, there's no doubt that it has done something we never imagined it was possible before.

References: Minds, The Mind Unleashed
Stem Cells Treatment Helped A Paralyzed Man Regain Upper Body Movement Stem Cells Treatment Helped A Paralyzed Man Regain Upper Body Movement Reviewed by Κατερίνα Παπ on 2:07 PM Rating: 5

1 comment

  1. The fact is that experimental medical branch is proving the immense value of neurorestoration and regenerative medicine!
    json formatter

    ReplyDelete

Don't show again. Close

Like us on Facebook?