Italy: Parliament approves stem cell testing

The following is an excerpt.

A controversial Italian stem cell therapy that scientists say is unproven will undergo its first solid scientific test. The Italian Senate today voted in favor of a new bill, already approved by the Chamber of Deputies on 16 May, that sets aside €3 million for a clinical trial of the treatment, devised by the Stamina Foundation in Turin.

Under existing Italian law, unproven stem cell therapies can be administered on a case-by-case basis to patients with untreatable, severe illnesses who have no other options—but only if there are enough published data on safety in internationally recognized journals and if therapies are prepared by authorized hospital labs under the Italian rules for the production of stem cells.

“This will probably be the first time that a parliament orders a clinical trial,” says Elena Cattaneo, director of UniStem stem cell center at the University of Milan.

Read the full story: Italian Parliament Orders Clinical Trial of Controversial Stem Cell Treatment

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