Rise in unproven U.S. stem cell clinics worry experts

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis.

According to experts, a vast stem cell market has boomed in recent years, particularly for orthopedic applications such as easing joint pain or for facelifts and other cosmetic procedures.

So far, more than 550 clinics around the U.S. offer unproved interventions for sports injuries and conditions including autism, multiple sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s disease. In one frequently advertised regimen, a patient might have adult stem cells harvested from his own fat tissue and injected at an injury site, purportedly to speed recovery.

Unfortunately, there is little systematic data about patients’ long-term outcomes—positive or negative—and in most cases, there is no scientific evidence that these costly procedures work. Many of these cellular therapies may not do much of anything but there is also the serious risk that recipients of cell injections could develop serious complications.

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“This all should still be in the research phase without question,” says Peter Rubin, a stem cell researcher. “We need to establish credible data around these therapies before bringing them to patients.”

Read full, original post: Unproven Stem Cell Clinics Proliferate in the U.S.

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