Objectives: Stem cells are characterized by self renewal and multipotent differentiation.We report the effects of intracavernosal transplant of human umbilical cord blood stem cells on diabetic erectile dysfunction.
Materials and methods: Seven type 2 diabetics who had failed to achieve an erection for at least 6 months despite medications, and who are currently awaiting penile prostheses, participated. All laboratory results were normal, except for impotence and diabetes mellitus. A total of 1.5 x 10(7) human umbilical cord blood stem cells were infused into the corpus cavernosum. No immunosuppressive measures were taken in any of the patients. International index of erectile function-5, SEP, GAQ, erection diary, blood glucose diary, and medication dosage were followed for 9 months.
Results: The mean age was 69.5 years (range, 57-87 years). Morning erections were regained in 3 participants within 1 month, and for all except 1 by the third month, and maintained for more than 6 months. Rigidity increased as the result of stem cell therapy alone, but was insufficient for penetration. With the addition of PDE5 inhibitor before coitus, 2 achieved penetration and experienced orgasm, and maintained for more than 6 months; however, 1 participant could not achieved penetration at ninth month. All but 1 reported increased desire. During follow-up, 2 returned for prosthesis, 4 returned to a nonerectile condition at 9 months, and 1 maintained erection sufficient for coitus with medication until the 11th month. Blood glucose levels decreased by 2 weeks, and medication dosages were reduced in all but 1 subject for 4 to 7 months. Glycosylated hemoglobin levels improved after treatment for up to 3 to 4 months.
Conclusions: Human umbilical cord blood stem cell therapy has positive effects on erectile dysfunction and diabetes mellitus. Stem cells and unknown humoral factors of human umbilical cord blood stem cells mediate mechanism may contribute to these positive effects.