Home Health Oregon Animals and Vets Get in on Stem Cell Research

Oregon Animals and Vets Get in on Stem Cell Research


Stem cells are unique cells in animal bodies, including humans, that could be the new frontier in medicine. There are currently hundreds of ongoing stem cell clinical trials across the country, and now an Oregon-based veterinarian and a few of his patients are experimenting with stem cell research for our four-legged friends.

2-year-old Newfoundland Tank and his owner Jill Lienert of Klamath Falls, Oregon had a problem with Tank’s arthritis that was causing a poor quality of life in the giant canine and concern for Lienert. Doctors originally led Lienert to believe that Tank’s condition would only get worse and that Lienert should consider putting Tank down once the dog’s hips became too diseased for him to enjoy life.

Luckily Oregon veterinarian Doug McInnis pointed Lienert and Tank in the direction of an experimental stem cell trial – Tank was the perfect candidate. “We want him to live a long life,” Lienert said. “If this stem cell thing works, it’ll give him a whole new lease on life.”

Established research has already identified stem cells as a treatment for many musculoskeletal conditions like arthritis, and the same results humans are experiencing can be enjoyed by dogs. Tank is one of 27 dogs participating in the trial being performed at West Ridge Animal Hospital in Klamath Falls. West Ridge joins twenty other clinics across the country testing over 600 dogs. Lienert is excited about the potential for Tank and the potential for stem cells and Tanks seems to be too, “He loves everybody here,” Lienert said.

Millions of our four-legged friends and humans alike suffer from chronic orthopedic conditions that can severely reduce mobility and quality of life including osteoarthritis, degenerative disc disease, and other conditions. Research is helping our dogs, but other research conducted by retired spine surgeon Kenneth Pettine retired MD, is helping their owners get a leg-up on mobility too.

Pettine’s FDA-approved clinical trials show stem cell therapies as an effective treatment for these chronic conditions. In Pettine’s trials patients have demonstrated increased mobility and use of their knees, neck, and back, and most were able to avoid traditional surgery to correct these issues. Thanks to stem cell trials across the country both humans and our companions will be able to move more freely and live happier and more productive lives.

To learn more about Pettine’s research, you can visit www.kennethpettine.com.