Macular degeneration is a degenerative disease of the retina in the eye. The macula, which is located at the centre of the retina is unable to function effectively and therefore causes a loss in central vision.
Stem cells are produced in the bone marrow. They are immature cells that have the potential to self-generate themselves into many different cell types in the body. Autologus stem cell therapy is when the patients own stem cells are used to treat the condition. Bone marrow or peripheral blood stem cells are collected from the patient and then frozen and stored until they are needed. Alternatively, the stem cells originate from a donor, this is the allongenic approach.
The stem cells are then implanted behind the eye. They can then self-generate into new cells and replace the degenerated cells, therefore slowing the progression of the disease.