Stemming an unhealthy tide

Bengalureans are thinking ahead. Many are planning for the future health of their children, banking on stem cells that are today viewed as a wonder cure for a host of diseases. The recent government approval for clinical trials in stem cell therapy has only increased their willingness to see it as a medical cure of the future.

Currently stem cell therapy holds out hope only for diseases like thalassemia, leukaemia and a few other immuno-deficiency disorders. So should people opt for stem cell banking when it can burn a hole in their pockets, requiring around Rs75,000 and more for a storing period of around 21 years?

“We usually suggest that parents opt for the banking only if they have a family history of thalassemia, leukaemia or some such blood-related disorder,” says Dr Sharat Damodar, consultant haematologist, Narayana Hrudayalaya Hospital and Mazumdar Shaw Cancer Center. Read more…

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