Cellular therapies and regenerative medicines are the future of medicine


Cells Are the New Cure: The Cutting-Edge Medical Breakthroughs That Are Transforming Our Health by Dr. Robin L. Smith (MD),‎ Dr. Max Gomez (Ph.D.), BenBella Books, US $, Pp, October 2017, ISBN 978-1944648800

Can you imagine a world where victims of irreversible spinal cord injuries are able to get out of their hospital beds and walk? Impossible? Right? No, it is possible now. Or, can you imagine a world where there’s no shortage of donor organs – because we grow human organs in laboratories? Science fiction? Right? No. This is not science fiction. In Cells Are the New Cure, Robin L. Smith, and Max Gomez say that this is the future of medicine although we may be a long way from seeing these therapies become widely applied. But, in a not-so-distant future, we will see medical science doing what we find difficult to imagine today even if that does not become commonplace. Cells Are the New Cure is based on 35,000 clinical trials related to cancer, autoimmune diseases, organ replacement, heart disease and even aging itself.

Cells Are the New Cure is written by two subject specialists. Dr. Robin L. Smith received her MD from Yale University and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business. As CEO of the NeoStem family of companies, which she led from 2006 to 2015, she pioneered the company’s innovative business model, combining proprietary cell therapy developments with a successful contract development and manufacturing organizations. Dr. Max Gomez (Ph.D.) has produced award-winning health and science segments for network stations in New York and Philadelphia. He has reported for ‘Dateline Today’ and ‘48 Hours.’ He won many awards including nine Emmy awards over last thirty years as a veteran medical correspondent for WCBS-TV in New York. Dr. Gomez is also the co-author of The Healing Cell and The Prostate Health Program.

Smith and Gomez say that stem cells from bone marrow will be used to repair damaged hearts and spinal discs and lungs and to slow the progression of Lou Gehrig’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Your immune system will be taught to destroy cancer. Your DNA will be repaired before symptoms of generic diseases even start. It will be a world of longer and healthier lives. This new field of regenerative medicine borrows from biology, biochemistry, tissue engineering, physics and applied engineering – an interdisciplinary approach to stimulating the body to heal and repair itself.

Smith and Gomez say that, in addition to rejuvenating a creaky knee or bad back, regenerative medicine has the potential to create therapies for previously untreatable diseases and conditions. Think of the hundreds or even thousands of diseases that result from malfunctioning, damaged or failing tissues. Each of these may be treatable and even curable through regenerative medicine therapies. Smith and Gomez write, “Yes, this sounds like an extreme claim, leading some to downplay the potential of regenerative medicine as if it were a nineteenth-century miracle tonic promising to cure everything from dropsy to ague.”

As evidence mounts for the benefit of cell-based regenerative medicine, what once was fringe science is becoming a recommended part of mainstream treatment for many conditions. The more we learn, the more this list of condition for which stem cells can repair tissue and restore functions grows. Smith and Gomez say that, in the coming years, cellular therapies will be the home of hope and hype. These will be overpromising blind alleys, wrong turns, and occasionally even discredited research. Smith and Gomez write, “Science is a human endeavor, and sometimes it goes wrong. However, we have realized enough promises in cell therapies to have passed an important tipping point… We know that despite the inevitable dead ends, there will also be breakthroughs. The question is not whether cell therapies will work but how and when.”

Cells Are the New Cure is a comprehensive introduction to the emerging regenerative and cellular therapies. Smith and Gomez show how doctors and scientists from several scientific disciplines are carrying our state-of-the-art research and applying on their patients to save their lives. They show that human cells will be used to treat and cure dangerous diseases in the not-so-distant future. The cellular therapies will also help us live longer and healthier lives. Cellular therapies and regenerative medicines may take several decades before they become commonplace, but they are the future of medicine. Even a high schooler will benefit and enjoy this brilliantly-written book.