Hirschsprung's Disease | Children's Charity

Hirschsprung's Disease

This research was completed on 31 May 2007

Project LeaderMr S E Kenny BSc, ChB, MD, FRCS(Paed) and Dr D H Edgar PhD
LocationDepartment of Paediatric Surgery, Alder Hey Children's Hospital and the Department of Human Anatomy and Cell Biology, University of Liverpool both at Liverpool
Grant awarded29 October 2004
Start date1 March 2005
End date31 May 2007
Grant amount£122,840.00
Grant codeSP4018

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Babies born with Hirschsprung's disease suffer from life-threatening bowel obstruction caused by lack of nerve cells in the rectum. In the UK, a baby is born with Hirschsprung's disease every 72 hours. Currently babies undergo surgery to relieve the obstruction and remove the diseased segment of bowel. However the long term outcome may be poor, with 10% requiring a lifetime colostomy and up to 7 out of 10 children having significant incontinence. The aim of this research is to isolate and grow stem cells taken from infants to see if they have the ability to form nerves. The researchers can then assess if such cells may be transplanted back into the affected bowel of babies with Hirschsprung's disease to provide them with a source of nerve cells.

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