News Headlines Article

FDA sends letters to 20 companies in attempt to rein in stem cell industry
The Washington Post

The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday sent 20 letters to companies in the burgeoning stem cell industry, telling them they are selling an unapproved product in violation of federal laws.

It also sent a more formal letter of warning to a company that makes umbilical cord blood products that have been used by such stem cell companies, and accused it of legal violations and safety lapses.

The letters are part of an ongoing attempt by the FDA to rein in the booming industry, which critics say has injured dozens of patients and cheated thousands more. In recent years, hundreds of clinics have have popped up selling stem cell procedures — not covered by insurance, unproven by science and unauthorized by the government — that purveyors claim can treat ailments ranging from creaky knees to Alzheimer’s, Crohn’s disease and multiple sclerosis.