Long time college football coach Jackie Sherrill is still just as passionate as he was when he was roaming the sidelines as head coach at Texas A&M in the 1980s, or when he was famously castrating a bull before his Mississippi State team took on Texas in the 1990s, but now that passion is being used to boost stem cell research, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
  Sherrill was in San Antonio on Wednesday to talk with researchers and physicians on the procedure on behalf of Celltex, a Houston-based stem cell research firm which is headed by David Eller, who is a long time friend and former head of the Texas A&M System Board of Regents.

  Sherrill says he underwent stem cell injections to treat a rotator cuff injury, one of many injuries he has suffered over the years as a player and a coach.

  "After three days I was completely without pain, and after five days I could lift weights," he said.

  Celltex says it's goal is to 'initiate breakthroughs in regenerative medicine through the use of autologous (one's own) stem cells."

  Sherrill says with Eller's encouragement, he has recruited several former NFL players who are suffering from a range of injuries due to their football careers.

  "Dementia, ALS, shoulders, knees, wrists, backs, and it is amazing how much they have improved their quality of life," he said.

  Sherrill said stem cells are also being researched as a possible treatment for CTE, the concussive disorder suffered by football players.  Dr. Bennett Amalou, the Pittsburgh pathologist whose work in linking CTE to football was featured in the movie 'Concussion,' will speak at a seminar on the topic in San Antonio next spring.

  Sherrill says one problem facing stem cell researchers like Celltex is the fact that the Food and Drug Administration restricts the use of stem cell treatment in the U.S., considering it to be not fully tested.  He received his stem cell treatment at a Celltex facility in Cancun, Mexico.  Sherrill hopes an FDA hearing set for next month in Washington will help break down those barriers.

  "Unfortunately, the FDA does not allow a lot of things, so you have to go out of the country," he said.