Sabato, 23 Gennaio 2021
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Home English Over 600 patients asking stem-cell treatments

Over 600 patients asking stem-cell treatments


Rome, May 23 - Some 600 patients are preparing to
appeal in Italian courts for stem-cell treatments following the
approval of a law on Wednesday legalizing its therapy, research
and permitting those who have begun stem-cell treatments to
continue them.
The law passed overwhelming in the Italian Senate with 259
yes votes, two nays and six abstaining.
According to the president of the Italian Stamina
Foundation for stem-cell research and treatment, David Vannoni,
the patients ready to appeal are in "emergency situations and
have already obtained the necessary prescription" from his
treatment center.
Vannoni, whose research group has carried treatments at a
Brescia hospital, is asking that the patients be given the
choice of stem-cell treatments from Stamina laboratories, not
only State-sponsored centers.
"The fear of is that these patients will fall outside of
the requirements of the approved decree (therefore not be
treated)," Vannoni said.
"Great expertise is needed to produce this line according
to Stamina protocol and we want our biologist to be the ones to
do so, obviously with maximum transparency," Vannoni said.
The law passed on Wednesday budgets three million euros for
an 18-month stem-cell therapy research programme sponsored by
the health ministry and set to begin July 1.
The Higher Institute for Health (ISS), a state health
institution for research and education, will coordinate
research, and work with the Italian pharmaceutical agency AIFA
and the National Transplant Centre.
The stem-cell law officially approves what is already being
carried out by Stamina in at least one hospital, despite
previous court rulings against stem-cell therapy.
A toddler at the Brescia hospital in northern Italy has
been undergoing stem-cell treatment which the government
grudgingly approved of in March.
At the time, the health minister said it would be risky to
the child's health to stop treatments that were underway.
Stem-cell treatment, which is legal in Italy in
life-threatening instances, is contentious because it sometimes
involves the destruction of a human embryo.
Italy banned the use of embryos in stem-cell research in
2004, but in 2007 Italian researchers obtained adult stem-cells
which they said were as effective as those obtained from

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