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Thread: Installment Eleven - 10 Questions with Kirshner Ross-Vaden RN

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    Default Installment Eleven - 10 Questions with Kirshner Ross-Vaden RN

    This month's questions are being answered by Kirshner Ross-Vaden RN

    She is the Vice President of the Foreign Patient Division of Beike Bio-tech and their lead medical consultant.

    1) Taking it for granted that people are different and therefore have different outcomes; for the most part--how soon after stem cell therapy can one feel improvement?

    The answer to this one is dependent on the patient?s diagnosis. For some such as Optic Nerve Hypoplasia or Cerebral Palsy it is not unusual for patients to show early signs of improvement even during their treatment course which is typically 3 to 4 weeks long. For others such as spinal cord patients one does see some small improvements in some cases within weeks but for most it takes 3 to 6 months.

    And, up to what period of time, if any, are the cells done doing their work?
    Would the type of cells used make a difference in your answers?

    I will answer the second question first and say yes; cell types do make a difference. For Umbilical Cord Stem Cells we typically look for them to create the most change at 3 to 6 months peaking out at around 9 to 12 months.

    [SIZE=2]2) Do you feel that stem cell treatment can cause cancer cells to proliferate if someone is pre cancerous or has cancer and does not realize it and gets stem cell treatment? I am on Arimidex for 5 years, will I ever be able to have stem cell therapy again?

    One of the biggest contraindications within stem cell treatment is cancer as yes it can in some cases speed up the replication process of the cancerous cells. Typically most companies will require that a patient be cancer free for at least two years prior to even considering them for treatment and even then many tests are required to ensure that the patient is indeed free of all cancerous cells.

    3) Is there more use of embryonic stem cells in China? How is it determined what kind of stem cell therapy is best for a patient?

    I do not work with embryonic stem cells. I can tell you that the definition of what is an embryonic stem cell is different in China than it is in the USA. Many working in the field of stem cells including many outside of China in other countries such as the Dominican Republic define an embryonic stem cell as any tissue that is not beyond 9 weeks of development. These means that someone may be telling you they use embryonic stem cells when in fact they are using tissue and/or cells taken from a fetus aborted prior to 9 weeks.

    4) Is it safe to go visit the dentist for a checkup after having stem cells? I am assuming that X-rays would be a BAD idea considering the area that was being focused on for treatment was the brain. I am also wondering about the stuff used for cleaning - if that would be toxic to the new cells as well. Since my child is very young and is the one who had treatment, she needs to use fluoride supplements. Is this toxic to the stem cells?

    I think it is best to avoid any type of scan for at least 30 days prior to treatment and 90 days post stem cell treatment. I would also advise not having any dental procedures during this same time frame so as to avoid anything that might create inflammation to the gum and or oral tissue this would include teeth cleaning. There are no studies concerning the interaction between stem cells and fluoride. I can say that many of our patents who have had stem cells have also ingested fluoride prior to and post treatment as it is in most tap water within the states and we still have very high improvement rates. This would indicate that it is unlikely that the fluoride will interfere with the cells.

    5) Explain how autologous stem cell treatment works when the cells are not manipulated in any way and are just reinfused shortly after extraction.

    This would depend on the type of autologous cells or rather tissue being used as there are many and the diagnosis of the patient. I would need more specific information to answer this question. It also depends on how the cells are processed more specifically which subset is being used by the stem cell provider. Some providers will target and culture to expand a certain subset from the patients tissue but most do not they just separate out the cells and then reinfuse them which is typically not as effective.

    6) Would the use of Botox within the first few months after uc stem cell treatment have an effect on the stem cells? (Note: patient had uc treatment for MS. She complained of a shoulder that ached and her neurologist gave her a Botox injection. She says it put her back where she started before stem cell therapy. The company where she went is questionable and it is unknown where the cells originated and if they were certified for purity).

    It is difficult to say what the reaction of Botox on the cells would be as there are no studies to draw information from. I however as always strongly suggest that no treatments such as Botox be done 30 days prior to and 90 days post stem cell treatment. Keep in mind that you are paying a great deal of money for your stem cells and you most certainly do not want to do anything that might interfere with the process. It is far better to stay on the conservative and safe side and stay away from anything that might have a negative effect on the cells.

    On a side note never accept stem cells unless you know where those cells were processed. These days there are many providers who are getting cells from third party uncertified "black market" sources/labs. Feel free to ask your provider for information about the processing and origin of the product you are paying for. If they can not answer basic questions and provide the name of the source then buyer beware.

    7) At your company, what measures are taken to assure that stem cell treatments are safe? What kind of stem cell therapy or therapies are used?

    Our processing methods are very involved and were developed over the course of many years. We do provide processing information to each person who sends20us an email inquiry along with lab information and certification. Each sample is tested three different times during processing for diseases. We also run QA and QC tests on each batch at the end of processing. If any batch falls below our pre determined standards it is tossed in the trash. The same holds true should a batch not measure above a certain cell count. Grid pattern cell counts are done on each batch at the end of processing and for Beike the total quantity for each sample must be above 15 million or it goes in the trash.
    Beike uses Umbilical Cord derived stem cells and Bone marrow stem cells. We are also actively engaged in research on genetically enhanced stem cells, Amniotic and iPs stem cells.

    8) Is there an age limit for stem cell therapy at the company where you work. How old must someone be and how old is too old?

    We do not have an upper age limit. Off hand I am thinking our oldest foreign client was in his late 80's. Beike also, to my knowledge, holds the record for the youngest person to have ever received a stem cell transplant. This was a 4 week old baby boy named Liam. Liam was one of my cases and was a brain injury child who is now over a20year old and doing very well. I do stay in touch with his mom and follow his progress. You can see Liam's story on my blog The Life and Times of Stem Cell Girl.

    9) I am currently investigating stem cell therapy for my 2 year old who has cerebral palsy. What successes has Beike had with small children with CP? Any failures?

    86% of the parents who have taken their CP children to Beike for treatment have reported improvements. That means approximately 1 out of 10 does not show improvements. These children are very special to me for personal reasons and I have worked very hard over the past 4 years to make available to kids a comprehensive treatment program that is effective in improving their quality of life and level of function. Within these cases I have found some of my greatest rewards and proudest moments.

    This year I was able to expand our CP program to include bone marrow transplants to those above the age of 6. I have also put together a new treatment program to offer direct injections for kids with contracted and spastic limbs. Typically these medical issues are dealt with by using Botox injections and or cutting of the tendons.

    Later this year I will begin a new case study series using direct intramu scular injections of stem cells to improve spastic muscle groups. This is something I have wanted to do for over a year and I am very excited that it is finally coming together. By early 2009 I hope to have a full fledged treatment protocol written so that this will become one of our standard treatment offers.

    This will be a big step forward in my ongoing efforts to help kids with CP. If you check the first entry on my blog you will see why I am so very passionate about kids with CP and Brain injuries.

    10) Where do you see stem cell therapy headed in the next few years?

    Within the next 10 years I hope to see major breakthroughs in Genetically Enhanced Stem Cells. If researchers can crack this nut it will open the flood gates on our ability to not just treat but possibly cure many devastating diseases. The early indications are very promising.

    Background Information

    My name is Kirshner Ross-Vaden RN and I am the Vice President of the Foreign Patient Division of Beike Bio-tech and their lead medical consultant.

    Umbilical Cord Stem Cells and their clinical applications are my area of expertise and personal passion. I have been in the medical field since the mid 1980's and have been working with stem cell therapy since 2004. My home base is the United States but I also travel throughout China as part of my job. I have been asked to write an introduction to readers about Beike which is a bio-tech company based in China. It is my hope that you find this informative and educational.

    Welcome to Beike

    As a company on the leading edge of medical technology we are dedicated to developing and providing safe, effective treatments utilizing Umbilical Cord Blood derived Stem Cell Therapy. We partner with top ranked hospitals across the globe, leading scientists and doctors. Our mission is to be the world leader in stem cell research. We pride ourselves in the customization and personalization of development and research as well as clinical care. The goal of our company is to make comprehensive cellular therapy widely available, accessible to those in need and as cost effective as possible.

    Company History

    Beike (pronounced Bay-Ka) is a bio-technology company based in China with its head offices located in Shenzhen. We were originally founded with capital from Beijing University, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and Shenzhen City Hall. In addition the formation of the company was also supported with grants from the China State National Fund.

    The research and clinical applications were developed over a period of several years beginning back in the late 1990's. The work was a collaboration of Beijing University, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, No. 3 Army Medical University, Zhongshan Medical University, Guiyang Medical College and Zhengzhou University. During this period and throughout all its collaborating laboratories Beike had over sixty Ph.D. researchers focusing on developing effective and safe stem cell products designed for wide clinical use.

    In 2001 the research based group to become known as Beike was given the go ahead by the Chinese governmental medical oversight department to proceed with treating patients. The company was incorporated in January of 2005 after the collaborating scientists felt comfortable enough with their years of research and clinical experience to begin treating patients with stem cells on a commercial scale.

    Our labs

    Beike's main research labs are located in Shenyang, Shenzhen and Zhengzhou. We partner with the government blood banks in these cities. Beike bio-tech obtains its prescreened cord blood directly from the government blood banks. There are many points that set us apart from all other stem cell companies but this is a major one that should be noted.

    We at Beike process our own cellular products from start to finish. These stem cells are literally in the hands of our own personnel every step of the way. This ensures the highest quality of product available and maintains a direct responsibility and thus reliability on the part of our company.
    Last edited by barbara; 09-15-2008 at 08:04 PM.

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