Treating Disease Before Birth with Tippi MacKenzie, MD

Teaching the patient’s immune system to tolerate foreign stem cells is the holy grail of transplantation. The fetal environment offers us a chance to achieve that goal.

Tippi MacKenzie, MD

Treating Disease Before Birth

Stem cell transplantation may hold the promise to treating many diseases before birth such as sickle cell anemia and muscular dystrophy. But first, researchers need to overcome many barriers, including rejection of stem cell transplants by the fetus. MacKenzie’s lab recently discovered that mothers’ T cells are responsible for rejecting the grafts and that this rejection may be avoided by using stem cells from the mother.

Tippi MacKenzie, MD
Assistant Professor
UCSF Division of Pediatric Surgery

Funding for MacKenzie’s research is provided by the American College of Surgeons, American Pediatric Surgery Association, American Surgical Association, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, March of Dimes and the National Institutes of Health.

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