January 20, 2021

The Niche

Trusted stem cell blog & resources

stem cell therapy

2 min read

Over the years I’ve asked patients to talk about their experiences getting a stem cell therapy of one kind or another. One particular post in 2016 has drawn almost 400 comments, many from patients. The insights provided by these patients and the questions asked in the comment stream have provided a unique window into what’s going on out there. There is a remarkable diversity of readers on this blog from all over the world. I know we have a lot of readers who are …Read More

2 min read

Stem cell therapy cost is a moving target. A lot depends on the circumstances. Did you get the therapy at a university or major medical center or like most people these days at a stem cell clinic? Did insurance pay any of the cost and if so, how much? If not, how did you get the needed funding? I’d like to ask you readers, if you have had a stem cell therapy of any kind, how much did you pay? Please let me know …Read More

4 min read

Hockey legend Gordie Howe had a devastating stroke last fall and supposedly a stem cell treatment in Mexico from for-profit stem cell businesses, Stemedica and Novastem, caused a remarkable recovery in Howe. It has been one of the most hyped stem cell stories in history. What really happened? Today a new article on a fresh investigation into this story sheds some important additional light on it including the bombshell that Howe’s family has invested in Stemedica. For background, the Howe treatment was given via stem cell company Stemedica …Read More

3 min read

Over the years I’ve often written about how unlicensed stem cell clinics and their physicians are putting patients at risk. In most if not all cases they are doing this simply for their own personal monetary gain. I do think that some of them truly believe they are helping patients, but still that doesn’t excuse risky behaviors that are throwing vulnerable patients into harm’s way. The other reality here is that some of the stem cell clinic doctors are also putting their own practices and …Read More

3 min read

The stem cell company Stemedica has made a name for itself in the media lately through hockey legend Gordie Howe, who received a non-FDA approved stem cell “treatment” in Mexico via Stemedica and its partner, Novastem. Howe, known as Mr. Hockey, had several strokes in late 2014 and his health was declining. Stemedica and Novastem gave Howe a free stem cell therapy. According to his family, Howe got a lot better. I’m glad he’s feeling better. What I’m less sure of is whether the stem cells or …Read More

6 min read

Is it the beginning of the end for dubious American clinics that sell transplants of unproven and non-FDA approved fat stem cell injections? As the year of 2014 was winding down, the FDA issued two key new draft guidances (see here and here) that could prove to be crash diets for these burgeoning fat stem cell clinics. (Update: As of 2020, the FDA has now clearly defined fat stem cells as drug products and filed suit against two firms marketing unapproved fat stem cells.) These new FDA guidances indicate …Read More

4 min read

One of the bigger stem cell stories in the past week was that hockey legend Gordie Howe had received a stem cell ‘treatment” that had “miraculous” positive effects after having a few strokes over the last couple months. (update: see more on celebrities rolling the dice on unproven stem cells here). I am highly skeptical of this holiday miracle stem cell story and very disappointed in the media for essentially swallowing the PR (most often verbatim) without giving it more thought. How about doing investigative reporting …Read More

4 min read

With a new document released today the FDA is more clearly on a path to regulate dubious stem cell clinics in the US. Update: in the years since this post, the FDA has more concretely defined autologous adipose stem cells as drug products. There are more than 100 such American clinics that are selling stem cell “treatments” to patients and almost all of them use non-FDA approved stem cell products isolated from fat tissue. The clinics have argued that they do not need FDA …Read More

6 min read

Advanced Cell Technology (ACT; $ACTC) has a new paper out on using human embryonic stem cells (hESC) to make MSCs with potentially powerful therapeutic potential. The paper, entitled Mesenchymal stem cell population derived from human pluripotent stem cells displays potent immunomodulatory and therapeutic properties, was published in the journal Stem Cells and Development. What’s the scoop on this paper and this area of adult stem cell preclinical/clinical research? It’s an interesting, notable paper. At the same time there are some areas in the paper that could have been …Read More