Lawmakers in Texas have approved a bill that will bring experimental stem cell therapies in from the cold. These therapies, as STAT reports, have been used by clinics across the country for years, but they’ve been doing so under regulatory radar.
There are reasons they’ve been under the radar, one of them being that many scientists believe that it’s risky to use therapies that have not been thoroughly tested. They might lack efficacy and, worse, may even do patients harm. Legislators apparently took that into account.
STAT: “Senators added amendments that would require the treatments to be delivered by a doctor at a hospital or ambulatory medical center and with the approval of an institutional review board, which reviews research that involves human participants. Another amendment would allow patients to sue should the treatment go awry.”
Those amendments seem to have addressed some of the concerns of advocates wary about using unapproved stem cell therapies.