CommentaryRegulatory Science

Stem Cells, Dot-Com

Science Translational Medicine  12 Sep 2012:
Vol. 4, Issue 151, pp. 151cm9
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3004030

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Abstract

Direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising of suspect goods and services has burgeoned because of the Internet. Despite very limited approval for use, DTC stem cell–marketed “treatments” have emerged for an array of conditions, creating global public health and safety risks. However, it remains unclear whether such use of stem cells is subject to drugs or biologics regulations. To address this gap, regulatory agencies should be given clear authority, and the international community should create a framework for appropriate stem cell use. In addition, consumer protection laws should be used to scrutinize providers.

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