09 June 2016

Cellular medicine will defeat incurable diseases

In the third reading, the State Duma adopted the long-awaited bill on the use of biomedical cell products in the treatment of

Anna Shushkina, "Parliamentary Newspaper"

In Russia, some enthusiasts in the field of medicine have already begun to treat patients using biomedical cell products, often quite successfully. But due to the fact that there is no law regulating this activity, they had to use subordinate administrative regulations to somehow legalize their activities.

"It was on the verge of a foul, the supervisory authorities looked through their fingers at it, realizing that they had not crossed the borders there," said Alexander Petrov, a member of the State Duma Committee on Health Protection.

Now, according to him, a systematic law on the circulation of cellular products is being adopted in Russia for the first time. "In fact, a new era in medicine is beginning, when many diseases can be treated with cells," Petrov said. The law opens up opportunities for the implementation of the most daring and progressive ideas in medicine, he believes. For example, by growing the pancreas from the cells of the patient himself.

In addition, thanks to the law, a new type of medical industry is being created, aimed at restoring the structures and functions of human tissues and organs. "Tissue engineering fits into the framework of innovative industries that should be supported and stimulated by the state," the deputy believes.

It is very important, according to him, that the bill regulates the import and export of biomedical cell products from Russia. Of course, it contains both legal and organizational conditions for the use of biomedical cells, their circulation and storage. The law introduces a number of serious restrictions, a strict system of registration, licensing, and control over the circulation of cellular products. It is assumed that a state register will be created for biomedical cells. The Ministry of Health will have to adopt a lot of by-laws to implement this law.

The use of embryos for growing cells will be banned

The bill introduces a number of serious prohibitions. Thus, it is prohibited to create a human embryo for the production of cellular products, as well as to obtain biomaterial in connection with the termination of pregnancy and work with plant and animal cells for the treatment of people. All these prohibitions are quite reasonable and justified, experts say. "On the one hand, the bill is a mechanism that opens a legitimate way for cellular products that can be used to treat patients, and on the other hand, it closes the way for those products that do not have an evidence base and may be dangerous to human health," said the rector of the First St. Petersburg State Medical University them. Academician I. Pavlov Sergey Bagnenko.

Unfortunately, the legal vacuum allowed until today to use cellular products that do not have an evidence base, he added. In general, the law intelligently and thoughtfully regulates the work with cellular products on the territory of our country, Bagnenko is sure.

Stem cells are not needed for "rejuvenation"

There is a strong association in the minds of many people that stem cells are used primarily for rejuvenation today. This is an incorrect perception, Deputy Alexander Petrov believes. Biocellular medicine is primarily aimed at the treatment of complex incurable diseases. "In 10-15 years, after carrying out a number of developments and introducing them into medical technologies, we will get good results in the treatment of serious diseases. For example, we dream that a kidney is grown from the cells of the patients themselves, so that they themselves can become donors and not suffer on hemodialysis for 15-20 years. Studies are already underway on the pancreas, retina, and heart valve. I am sure we will go further," the deputy said. In many countries, increased attention is paid to the development of biomedicine. In particular, in Germany there are good results on research in the field of cancer treatment using altered cells of the patient himself. And in Japan, they learned how to grow teeth from stem cells.

And as for the use of stem cells in Russia for "rejuvenation", they had to be severely restricted, because their uncontrolled use led, unfortunately, in some cases to sad results, the deputy stated. Such a law should have been adopted 2-3 years earlier, he believes.

Perhaps the law will have to be corrected

In general, the law on the use of biomedical cells will undoubtedly contribute to the progress of our medicine, says the director of Transgenbank (Russian Collection of Genetic Material) Igor Goldman.

"At the same time, it will probably be necessary to detail the list of those cellular biomaterials that fall under the scope of this law. First of all, it may, for example, concern genetic material for an actively developing new direction of clinical medicine – gene therapy," Goldman said. The adopted document will help streamline our international cooperation in this matter, and within the country will allow us to use for medical purposes only biomedical cell technologies proven in terms of safety and effectiveness of therapeutic action, he is sure.

Portal "Eternal youth" http://vechnayamolodost.ru  09.06.2016

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