Duke autism

The Duke Autism Program has been studying cord blood cells for autism for many years, but their own studies and those clinical trials by others have not found any evidence that cord blood helps autism. Nonetheless the Duke team continues their experiments on children and there are concerns about the source of their funding. I’m also concerned about their possible entanglements with a for-profit stem cell clinic in Panama.

Vice tackles dicey Cryo-Cell Duke mega-million peds clinic plan

Cord-blood-autism

When I first learned about the multi-$10 million cord cell clinic deal between Duke and Cryo-Cell I couldn’t believe what I was reading. Duke’s involved in this? The problem: marketing unproven cells for kids Yes, this wasn’t some stem cell clinic operating out of a strip mall seeking to make big money off of injecting …

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FDA should freeze Duke EAP & probe $58 million Cryo-Cell deal linked to it

cryo cell infusion clinic marketing

I recently found concerning SEC filings from the biotech Cryo-Cell about a deal it has with a Duke team for infusions of children with unproven umbilical cord cells. This turns out to be a $58 million deal. It relates in a major way to a Duke compassionate use or expanded access program (EAP) that already had raised …

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Duke & Cryo-Cell plan big stem cell clinic for kids for unproven infusions

cryo cell duke stem cells autism cp

Duke Professor Joanne Kurtzberg’s clinical work on umbilical cord blood for autism and cerebral palsy (CP) involves a partnership with a publicly-traded cord blood banking firm called Cryo-Cell. Kurtzberg is also the Medical Director at the firm. In addition they have intellectual property in this area. The Duke team’s efforts, including those done outside of …

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Cord conflicts at the journal Stem Cells Translational Medicine

Cord-blood-autism

The journal Stem Cells Translational Medicine has a long track record of publishing great work. I also have a lot of respect for the editors there and I’ve published there myself. But a few recent events have sparked concerns including over possible undisclosed conflicts of interest in some papers there about cord blood for autism. …

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Fact-Checking Panama stem cell institute: cost, safety, efficacy, docs

The Stem Cell Institute, Panama stem cells

Somehow time has flown by so that I’ve been around for ages in the stem cell universe and some unproven stem cell clinic type firms, like the well-known Panama stem cell clinic that sells autism “treatments”, are also long-timers. It’s been an odd parallel existence for more than a decade. Today’s post is focused squarely …

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Weekend cell biology reads: Mesoblast COVID-19 deal, pubs

bergert cell stem cell 2020 cell mechanics sm

The COVID-19 pandemic is tearing through the country right as we are starting into the holiday season, but the wheels of science including cell biology keep going and we keep reading all the great work. What news or papers caught your eye? Here are some of the things I have on my list of reading. …

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More Duke autism program backstory: stem cell ‘magic’ & money

Duke-Curemark-autism-study-pamphlet

Last week I wrote a long post detailing the troubling multimillion-dollar reverberations between the Duke autism program and a for-profit stem cell clinic in Panama called The Stem Cell Institute. The potential entanglements between the Duke group and the Panama clinic raise a bunch of questions and concerns. They center on questionable, unproven autism “treatments”. …

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Does Duke autism team partly have Panama stem cell clinic to thank for $10s of millions?

Drs.-Neil-Riordan-and-Joanne-Kurtzberg-MSCs-for-autism

What do a Panama stem cell clinic and the Duke autism program have in common? More than I might have imagined. There is a puzzle when it comes to the controversial idea of using cord blood for autism, because two of the strongest proponents are the autism cord blood program at Duke and for-profit, unproven …

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Duke phase II trial: no benefit of cord blood for autism

Cord-blood-autism

A solid new, blinded placebo-controlled Phase II study from a Duke team clearly shows no benefit of cord blood for autism. Surprisingly, the team has said they are encouraged by the results. As a result, they apparently will continue this kind of work anyway despite their data. In contrast, I see the data as a …

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