Mesenchymal Stem Cell Therapy in Multiple System Atrophy


About this study

The purpose of this study is to determine whether mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can be safely delivered to the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of patients with multiple system atrophy (MSA).

Participation eligibility

Participant eligibility includes age, gender, type and stage of disease, and previous treatments or health concerns. Guidelines differ from study to study, and identify who can or cannot participate. There is no guarantee that every individual who qualifies and wants to participate in a trial will be enrolled. Contact the study team to discuss study eligibility and potential participation.

Inclusion Criteria

  1. Participants aged 30-80 years old with a diagnosis of MSA based on clinical criteria and standardized autonomic testing. This approach allows for identification of patients with MSA with very high specificity and is yet sensitive enough to allow for enrollment of patients at a disease stage at which an intervention on the natural disease course has a meaningful impact on patient outcome. Patients therefore have to fulfill Gilman Criteria (2000) for probable MSA of the parkinsonian subtype (MSA-P) or cerebellar subtype (MSA-C) and have findings on autonomic function testing suggestive of MSA (CASS ≥5 or a TST% ≥25%).
  2. Participants who are less than 4 years from the time of documented MSA diagnosis.
  3. Participants with an anticipated survival of at least 3 years in the opinion of the investigator.
  4. Participants who are willing and able to give informed consent.
  5. "Normal" cognition as assessed by Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE). We will require a value >24.

Exclusion Criteria

Any of the following conditions will exclude the participant from entering the study:

  1. Women of childbearing potential who do not practice an acceptable method of birth control. Acceptable methods of birth control in this study are: surgical sterilization, intrauterine devices, partner's vasectomy, a double-protection method (condom or diaphragm with spermicide), hormonal contraceptive drug (i.e., oral contraceptive, contraceptive patch, long-acting injectable contraceptive) with a required second mode of contraception.
  2. Participants with a clinically significant or unstable medical or surgical condition that, in the opinion of the investigator, might preclude safe completion of the study or might affect the results of the study. These include conditions causing significant central nervous system (CNS) or autonomic dysfunction, including congestive heart failure, recent (<6 months) myocardial infarct, cardiopulmonary disease, severe, uncontrolled hypertension, thrombocytopenia (<50 x 10(9)/L), severe anemia (<8g/dl), immunocompromised state, liver or kidney disease (creatinine >2.3mg/dl), uncontrolled diabetes mellitus (HbA1c >10g%), alcoholism, amyloidosis, uncontrolled hypothyroidism, sympathectomy, unstable peripheral neuropathies, concurrent infections, orthopedic problems that compromise mobility and activity of daily living, cerebrovascular accidents, neurotoxin or neuroactive drug exposure, parkinsonism due to drugs (including neuroleptics, alpha-methyldopa, reserpine, metoclopramide).
  3. Participants with malignant neoplasms.
  4. Participants who have taken any investigational products within 60 days prior to baseline.
  5. Medications that could affect autonomic function. If patients are taking those medications, those will be suspended prior to autonomic testing. Therapy with midodrine, anticholinergic, alpha and beta adrenergic antagonists or other medications that affect autonomic function will be withdrawn 48 hours prior to autonomic evaluations. Fludrocortisone doses up to 0.2 mg per day will be permitted.
  6. Diseases with features of Parkinsons Disease; e.g., diffuse Lewy body disease, progressive supranuclear palsy, essential tremor, hereditary olivopontocerebellar atrophy, or postencephalitic parkinsonism.
  7. Dementia (DSM-IV criteria - American Psychiatric Association 1994). The score on the Mini-Mental State Examination must be >24.
  8. History of electroconvulsive therapy.
  9. History of brain surgery for Parkinsons disease.
  10. Patients with contraindication for MRI scanning, including those with MRI-incompatible pacemakers
  11. Patients with active systemic infection or local infection, which is close to the spinal injection site

Participating Mayo Clinic locations

Study statuses change often. Please contact the study team for the most up-to-date information regarding possible participation.

Mayo Clinic Location Status Contact

Rochester, Minn.

Mayo Clinic principal investigator

Wolfgang Singer, M.D.

Closed for enrollment

Contact information:

Tonette Gehrking CAP

(507) 284-0336

More information


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