Friday, September 13, 2013

Ill, Desperate And in Search Of Stem Cells

Olivia Simpson
12:44 pm

Science Times
The New York Times

Ill, Desperate And in Search Of Stem Cells
By Laura Beil

In Tijuana, Mexico, Dr. Lopez runs an institute where patients are being treated using adult stem cell methods. Scientists have discovered that fat, bone marrow, and other parts of the body contain stem cells, that rejuvenate themselves in the tissues in which they are found. Questions have arisen about the proof and safety of these procedures. But there is a rise of an international industry catering to hopeful customers willing to pay thousands of dollars.
            Dr. Lopez claims that scientists in Mexico lack the government research support available in the United States, which has left him no choice but to charge his patients. But American doctors believe that, if the stem cell business “continues to flourish without proper scrutiny,” then research progress will suffer and funding may plummet.
            There is little evidence to indicate whether adult stem cell treatments are working. Dr. Lopez says he is trying to publish data from the 125 patients he as treated so far but he faces the struggle of being in Tijana. This week, the International Society for Stem Cell Research is to release a statement declaring the use of stem cells outside scientific settings to be “a threat to patient welfare, autonomy, and to the scientific process.”

            From this article, one can connect the issue of practicing this type of medicine in Mexico to Globalization and the spread of companies and services around the world. The article mentions that a lot of American doctors these days, especially in this field of research, are going to places out of the country like Mexico to do their clinical trials because it is cheaper. Though this may affect how people look at the legitimacy of the trials and services, it is more economically sound for the clinical trial runners. Thus, then trend will probably keep occurring.

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