Kenneth Pettine, M.D. Releases an Easy to Understand History of the Mesenchymal Stem Cell

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In an effort to spread awareness and knowledge of the mesenchymal stem cell, Dr. Kenneth Pettine has released an easy to understand history.

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truly believe MSC therapy will change the practice of how we currently treat orthopedic and spine injuries, arthritis, and autoimmune diseases

Kenneth Pettine, M.D. is passionate about treating regenerative illness through mesenchymal stem cell therapy. Below, Dr. Pettine discusses the history of this stem cell and why it is so important.

What is a stem cell?
A stem cell is a special type of cell because it can turn into other types of cells like bone cells, skin cells, liver cells, etc. Embryonic stem cells can become an entire body. When we are born, we have over 20 different types of stem cells that we keep for the rest of our lives because they keep replacing themselves. These stem cells can only turn into a few types of end stage cells.

What is a mesenchymal stem cell?
Mesenchymal stem cells, or MSCs, can turn into bone (osteoblasts), cartilage (chondroblasts) or tendons and ligaments (fibroblasts). That is why the MSC is the most important cell for orthopedics. This stem cell is required to heal fractures, treat arthritis and soft tissue injuries. The MSC may be the most important cell in the body because it modulates the immune system and controls inflammation in the body. I think of it as the conductor for the orchestra that is your immune system.

History of the MSC
A red blood cell only lives for 120 days. Our skin is constantly shedding old, dead cells and replacing them with new cells. How does this happen? The concept of stem cells originated in the late 1800’s to explain how our blood, skin, bone, etc. keeps renewing themselves throughout our life time.

In 1924, Alexander Maximow was the first person to observe under a microscope the cell that would later be named by Caplan as a mesenchymal stem cell in 1991. The first clinical trials of the MSC began in 1995. All of the history and study on the MSC was from cells found in bone marrow. Hundreds of clinical trials have been and continue to be conducted to study this very unique stem cell.

The MSC is by far the most studied stem cell in the body! Every year hundreds of research articles are published just about the MSC. The MSC has been extensively studied in the laboratory, in animals, and recently in humans. Because of its unique ability to modulate our immune system, it is being extensively studied to treat numerous auto-immune diseases such as Parkinson’s, Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Lupus, fibromyalgia, and asthma, just to name a few. Using the MSC to treat animals with injured and arthritic legs is now standard care in veterinary medicine. More and more clinical studies are being published demonstrating the safety and efficacy of treating arthritis in humans with MSC therapy.

“I truly believe MSC therapy will change the practice of how we currently treat orthopedic and spine injuries, arthritis, and autoimmune diseases”, said Dr. Pettine.

For more information on Dr. Pettine’s work, visit

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Farra Larimore for Kenneth Pettine, M.D.
Kenneth Pettine, M.D.
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