Dr Charan Ganta’s Passion for Stem Cell Research

(Dr. Charan Ganta) My name is Dr. Charan Ganta. I’m a Veterinary Anatomic Pathologist, here at Kansas State Veterinary Diagnostic Lab. Besides that I have passion in stem cell research. We work with several animal diseases, one is chronic kidney disease, is one of my other area. Also I work with Cancer research as well, see how stem cells can cure cancer. One of the biggest things I’m really passionate about, as a veterinarian, is I really want to contribute to the animal world. There are studies that were done in humans quite a bit, but I’m translating the other way around, where I’m bringing the studies that are done in humans into the animal world. I want to contribute to the veterinary field and provide the latest treatment options to animals in areas. I believe stem cells have that ability to cure diseases which is very hard to even think about it, I imagine. At this point, right now, we’re working on chronic kidney disease, and we’re actively recruiting patients to treat chronic kidney disease. I’m also collaborating with an oncologist here at K-State, with whom we’re working on; actually we’re going to work on treating lymphomas in dogs. Again, ultimately whatever the outcome is going to be, we’re going to translate into human world or human medicine. However I’m very much excited to do this in the animals here. In the last three years one of my works that we published was on cancer research. Basically this was absolutely done on laboratory animals. We use rats as an animal model. We kind of created an animal model of breast cancer. We injected tumor cells into the rat mammary fat bag and then we created mammary tumors, basically kind of making the human mammary carcinoma. After the tumors cells were injected we waited for 10 days, and then we injected stems cells that are derived from the umbilical cord of a rat. So basically we’re injecting rat stem cells into the rat, so that way we can prevent any kind of rejection. Then after 35 days what we noticed was once we inject the stem cells the tumor was completely decreased in size, it’s almost non-detectable, as compared to ones in our controls where we did not inject stem cells, and the tumors kind of grew up to like 2 centimeters or almost close to an inch. Then we end up sacrificing these rats. This kind of really tells us that definitely there are some actual properties to these stem cells, though which is something is sure so far in rats. There several other people who done similar studies and showed great promise, and they showed that — in fact the stem cells have the actual properties. Right now we’re trying to translate this thing into animals. We’re trying work on a lymphoma model in dogs. I think the studies right now are ongoing — in vitro, right now. They’re trying to see if really the stem cells can decrease a tumor cell proliferation, which is ongoing right now.

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