Dr. Michael Murphy
Each year, thousands of Americans lose limbs due to severe peripheral arterial disease (PAD), and Dr. Michael Murphy at the Indiana University School of Medicine is working to change that.
Murphy, an assistant professor at the Indiana Center for Vascular Biology and Medicine, is the only physician in the U.S. conducting an FDA-approved clinical trial using adult stem cell injections to treat patients with PAD-related leg pain and foot ulcers. Murphy's goal is to reduce the need for leg amputation by treating these patients with injections of their own stem cells.
Six thousand miles away in Iraq, Tim Howey is following Murphy’s groundbreaking research with keen interest. Howey, an IU alumnus and civilian employee for a U.S. contractor, recently gave a $50,000 gift to support Murphy’s clinical trial. The Cryptic Masons Medical Research Foundation in Nashville, Indiana, matched Howey’s gift.
Howey has a deep commitment to helping Murphy lessen the devastating effects of PAD.
“My mother died from heart and renal failure caused by diabetes,” he says. “I decided that vascular and heart disease research projects would contribute to the fight against diabetes. My will is set up to donate my entire estate to the Indiana University School of Medicine in care of the IU Foundation upon my passing.”
Fifty percent of patients treated in the PAD study are pain free and not facing amputation. Murphy is optimistic.
“Annually, 30,000 to 50,000 people in this country lose a limb due to PAD. We are hopeful that stem cell therapy may be a way to treat these patients.”