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Stem Cell Therapy For Autism

Stem Cell Therapy For Autism:

The Delhi High Court has allowed two children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) to undergo stem cell therapy for their condition.

  • This is overturning a previous recommendation by the Ethics and Medical Registration Board (EMRB) of the National Medical Commission (NMC) against the use of stem cell treatment for autism spectrum disorder.
  • The EMRB recommended against the use of stem cell therapy for ASD due to concerns about “predatory marketing” and false hope, as well as the lack of a well-established protocol for its use.
  • Stem cells are cells from which all other cells in the body, with specialized functions, are generated.
  • There are two main categories: pluripotent stem cells, which can differentiate into any cell type in the adult body, and adult stem cells, which are tissue-specific and can only generate cells for a particular organ.
  • Stem cells have been used in medicine, particularly in regenerative medicine, for over 90 years.
  • Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, for instance, is used to treat conditions like leukaemia and lymphoma, where healthy stem cells are introduced to replace damaged cells.
  • Autism spectrum disorder is a neurological and developmental disorder affecting communication, behaviour, and learning.
  • While there is no cure for ASD, various therapies are used to manage symptoms and improve the individual’s quality of life.