NZ Herald/NZPA: Stem cell campaigners win go-ahead for trial

An ethics panel has granted approval for New Zealand’s first clinical trial of adult stem cell treatment for spinal cord injuries.

The stem cells, harvested from their noses, will be injected into the spinal injury sites of 6 wheelchair-bound people.

An excerpt: (read in full here)

“”We will be contacting GPs … asking if they have any people with spinal injuries on their books who may be suitable that they may want to approach, and also getting in touch with spinal injury networks,” said Otago Medical School haematologist and cell biologist Jim Faed.

“About 5000 people are in wheelchairs with spinal cord injuries, but Dr Faed said only a dozen would be accepted for the trial, and only half of those would get stem cells.

“Six people will have the surgery while the other six will go through the intensive rehabilitation and be the control group to help measure the effects of the stem cells.”