DoH vs imported stem cells

Manila, Philippines The Department of Health (DOH) will soon ban the importation of imported stem cell preparations that were gathered from animals and even from fetal embryo.

The Philippine Society for Stem Cell Medicine (PSSCM) said these stem cell preparations are usually shipped from Germany and were gathered from sheep, rabbits and other animals but are sold as human stem cells. Dr. Rey Melchor Santos, PSSCM said the draft on the guidelines for the use of stem cell medicine in the country will soon be nalized by the DoH and this will include a ban on the use of imported stem cells including stem cells taken from aborted fetuses.

There are some preparations from other countries derived from fetal embryo which is unethical and is totally not allowed in the country, Melchor told reporters in a forum in Quezon City yesterday.

According to Melchor, administering stem cell treatment is a delicate matter as complications also occur. He said there are reports of stem cells causing cancer to patients who received it.

We have to be really careful where the stem cell is coming from because we dont know its complications. Incompatibility or rejections can kill the patient, the doctor warned.

The DoH allows the use of adult autologous stem cells or those that were sourced from the patient himself. Stem cells can be harvested from the bone marrow or from the adipose tissues (body fat). Incoming President of the Philippine Medical Association (PMA) Dr. Leo Olarte said the guidelines would also limit the use of stem cell treatment among licensed facilities and trained medical personnel. (Jenny F. Manongdo)



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DoH vs imported stem cells

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