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Episode 56: Australian Medical Breakthrough Gives Hope to Stroke Victims

Ambulances seen outside the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney, Thursday, September 6, 2018. (AAP Image/Joel Carrett)

An Australian-developed therapy could hold the key to saving the lives of patients after they've suffered a stroke.

SBS Italian news, with a slower pace. This is Slow Italian, Fast Learning, the very best of the week’s news, read at a slower pace, with Italian and English text available.

Slow Italian, Fast Learning, il meglio dei nostri servizi della settimana, letti più lentamente e più scanditi, con i testi in italiano e in inglese.

Italian

Una terapia sviluppata in Australia potrebbe diventare la chiave per salvare le vite di pazienti che hanno appena avuto un ictus - la seconda causa di morte al mondo.

Il semplice trattamento comporta l'iniezione di cellule staminali di placenta e sta mostrando risultati promettenti in esperimenti condotti a Melbourne.

Kevin Baird si descrive come una cavia umana ed è orgoglioso di esserlo. Solo otto settimane fa l'agricoltore del Victoria ha sofferto un grave ictus che ha minato la sua capacità di parlare e di muoversi.

Nel giro di poche ore il 67enne è diventato il primo paziente al mondo a ricevere una innovativa infusione di cellule staminali che ha quasi immediatamente sortito effetti benefici.

L'Associate Professor dell'Hudson Institute, Rebecca Lim, ha dichiarato che l'uomo ha mostrato un miglioramento considerevole a pochi giorni di distanza.

"The unique propeties of these amniotic cells is that they are well-tolerated. They don't have to be matched, they don't have to be typed, so rejection is not a risk that we have to deal with."

Dopo un ictus, ogni minuto due milioni di cellule muoiono.

La professoressa Lim si augura che questa terapia a base di cellule staminali possa diventare un trattamento standard per i pazienti subito dopo un ictus - addirittura in ambulanza sulla via dell'ospedale.

"The procedure is very simple. An IV line is put into the patient and the stem cells are transfused.. and that's the end of it within an hour."

La professoressa Lim ha dichiarato che, dal momento che gli ictus uccidono milioni di persone in tutto il mondo, questa innovazione ha attirato attenzione a livello internazionale.

"Having presented our research around the world one of the first things we hear from our colleagues in Europe and in North America is 'wow, never heard of that. Where are you from again?'" 


 

English

 An Australian-developed therapy could hold the key to saving the lives of patients in the crucial minutes after they've suffered a stroke - the second leading cause of death globally.

The simple treatment involves the injection of placenta stem cells and is showing promising results during trials in Melbourne.

Kevin Baird is a self-confessed human guinea pig - and a proud one at that. Only eight weeks ago, the Victorian farmer suffered a debilitating stroke that affected his speech and body function.

Within hours, he had become the first patient in the world to receive a ground-breaking stem cell infusion that showed almost immediate beneficial effects on the 67-year-old.

Hudson Institute researcher Associate Professor Rebecca Lim says within days he was showing remarkable improvement.

"The unique propeties of these amniotic cells is that they are well-tolerated. They don't have to be matched, they don't have to be typed, so rejection is not a risk that we have to deal with."

After a stroke, two-million brain cells die every minute and with time critical.

Professor Lim hopes this stem cell therapy could become standard treatment for patients in the aftermath - even in the ambulance on the way to hospital.

"The procedure is very simple. An IV line is put into the patient and the stem cells are transfused.. and that's the end of it within an hour."

Professor Lim says with strokes killing millions globally every year, the breakthrough has attracted international attention.

"Having presented our research around the world one of the first things we hear from our colleagues in Europe and in North America is 'wow, never heard of that. Where are you from again?'"

Report by Gareth Boreham 

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