The following article was posted on the MSRC website today.
At least the company is attempting to collect data on the patients - unlike, I understand, the stem cell company in Holland where several UK MS sufferers have gone.
But I'm still very cautious as to the real benefits from these procedures. Paying all that money to get cold feet doesn't strike me as value for money. UK neuro's are advising patients against such stem cell procedures (which in my opinion is good advice).
I took a look at the company website which did nothing to allay my fears about these sorts of companies. I like the picture of Dr Sapse - he looks like he could do with a dose of stems cells himself.
MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS (MS) PATIENTS IMPROVE AFTER STEMCELL USE - update 21 February 2006
Four MS patients, all wheelchair bound, have reported the following results two weeks after the stem cell / placenta implant (the Implant)
1. Cold feet needing various forms of heating during the night become warm with no need of heating.
2. Substantial improvement or disappearance of spasticity.
3. Being able, while in the wheelchair, to move their legs with relative ease.
4. Urinary frequency markedly reduced, and in one case the use of self catheterization a painful and infection prone procedure, discontinued.
5. Initiating or increasing walking distance with the help of a walker.
These results were obtained by Nevada physicians doing the implant procedure in their private offices. Accordingly the use of the implant will be extended to other conditions, besides MS namely Alzheimer's, strokes, juvenile diabetes type I, retinitis pigmentosa (RP), macular degeneration also in children/adolescents with autism and Rett's syndrome. There is also growing interest in using the Implant as an anti-aging/aging-control procedure, placenta having gained already the reputation of being "the Fountain of Youth from the Womb!"
However our main interest now is in MS, and our first objective is to have the placenta implant used in 10+ MS patients, hoping to collect enough data, to enable us to submit to the FDA, the Center of Biological Research (CBER) an Investigational New Drug (IND) application for a biological product.
An interesting proposal had been received from a main TV chain by which they would be interested in a story, where subjects programmed for the implant would be examined by specialized physicians, before and up to three months after the procedure. This proposal would give them also the right to film among others the whole Implant procedure.
STEM CELL PHARMA INC (SCPI)
SCPI is a privately held biotechnology corporation formed May 2005 in Las Vegas. SCPI has acquired from its President, Alfred T. Sapse MD "(Ret) the world wide rights to a proprietary technology titled Amnion Stem Cells, Telomerase Enhanced Placenta Implant (The Implant)." This procedure would enable amnion stem cells/placenta with the potential to differentiate into a wide variety of different organs, including: the heart, liver, and brain, be transferred from the donor, the placenta of the new born, to the recipient in less than three hours. This technique does not need freezing of the cells, and subsequent thawing. Subsequently the multiplication or the increase many fold in the number of stem cells would not be done by culturing them, in a medium often containing rat cells "the feeder" and subject to contamination, as it is being done in many research, but being cultured in the best feeder there is namely in the body of the recipient. The role of enhancing telomerase, an enzyme, which extends the number of multiplications of the stem cells is vital since otherwise these cells multiply only twenty times and die. In this regard a statement by Makki (2005) that the amnion cells lack telomerase activity is incorrect.
The amnion stem cells do have telomerase activity, which activity is increased through a proprietary technique that assures the multiplication of the telomerase many times over (Suggested reading: Amniotic Fluid Cells and Human Stem Cell Research – A New Connection by AR Prusa M. Hengstschläger Med. Sci. Monit. 2002: 8(11):RA 253-257)
Another amazing capability of the amnion cells is in its fetal tissue engineering ie. in building up new tissues. Two (2) cc of amniotic fluid rich in stem cells, might be able to correct congenital defects if implanted immediately after birth in the body of a new born with such defects (ibid).
So where do we go from here? We believe that by proceeding with the program of stem cell/placenta implants, as described above, we will be able to bring important new date in the use of amniotic stem cells, which eventually would shorten the time of certain research now in progress and provide new treatments much sooner than anticipated.
For more information please contact:
Alfred T. Sapse MD (ret)
c/o Stem Cell Pharma Inc.,
Las Vegas, NV
Phone: (702) 734-6814
Fax: (702) 733-9505
Website: Stem Cell Pharma Inc Website