Patients with incurable diseases are increasingly travelling thousands of miles for expensive, but risky and unproven stem-cell procedures. A Commentary in Nature Reports Stem Cells analyzes the efforts that the governments of China, India, Thailand, and the United States have made to curb such practices, and why they often prove ineffective.
Profit-driven practitioners advertise services directly to clients and are increasingly organized into international networks. Though some countries have prosecuted individuals and closed down clinics, many clinics are thriving. In the Commentary, Doug Sipp from the RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology in Japan and Sorapop Kiatpongsan from Harvard and Chulalongkorn University (Bangkok) show how countries fail to stop stem-cell providers from charging patients huge sums to administer unproven treatments, either because appropriate regulations do not exist or are not enforced.
The Commentary will be available online: here.
Doug Sipp (RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology, Kobe, Japan)
Sorapop Kiatpongsan (Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand)
Abstract available online.
(C) Nature Reports Stem Cells press release.
Message posted by: Trevor M. D'Souza