Commercialization of Stem Cell Therapies Rapidly Moving Forward in India

An Indian news article caught my eye today:

Reliance Life Sciences (RLS), the pioneer of embryonic stem cell research in the country, is likely to launch its first stem cell-based therapies for [neurodegenerative] diseases, including Parkinson's and ocular diseases and spinal cord injury soon.

Considering the successful completion of the pre-clinical and clinical studies with due regulatory approval in another six months to one year period, these novel therapies are likely to be launched in the country by the end of next year, sources from the company said.

"As far as the embryonic stem cell group is concerned, a few of them are in the pre-clinical stage and the results are quite promising. We expect that most of our research efforts into the area of stem cells and regenerative medicines, including tissue engineering and molecular diagnostics, will reach the commercial stage in a year or two," said K V Subramaniam, head, Reliance Life Sciences.

Reliance Life Sciences is a well-backed operation by the look of it; I imagine that this is the visible tip of the iceberg in terms of stem cell research in India - money to burn on PR and media strategies in addition to research. Even discounting optimism in their schedules, the projection of commercial regenerative medicine by the end of 2007 is very good news for the field. If large Indian concerns are at this point, then other similar groups around the world are certainly looking at the same sort of schedule.

India suffers under a fairly heavy hand of government, with more than its share of destructive socialist policies and corruption. It may still be the case, however, that medical research and the commercialization of new medical technologies is not as held back as it is in the US - meaning that Indian politicians haven't yet introduced anything as monumentally terrible as the present FDA. I don't see anyone rolling out cell therapies based on embryonic stem cell research in the US by the end of 2007.

As I've said before, this sort of competition from different regions - quickly leading to large-scale medical tourism from those parts of the world that fall behind - is probably the best short-term hope to slow the ongoing destruction-by-regulation of the medical research and commercialization infrastructure in the US.

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How are you going to reach Joe Six-pack?

I keep reading the articles and books on the coming future and all that it holds for us. I totally support every effort to bring this amazing life to everybody on earth. I want aging to be reversed and aging to be stopped so that one day the only thing kids will have to fear is the next Halloween movie. I even have a DNA bank with my dogs tissue safely stored so I can retrieve her from the endless night. My daughter has her instruction as to the care of my body incase I should pass before I can be regenerated or if I step in front of a train etch. But for me to be regenerated or even my dog, the public is going to have to understand what is happing.

Joe Six-Pack, whom I love dearly; I'm married to him, is not informed about any of this and won't believe it if he hears about it. Things will always be the same to him; you are born, grow up, have kids and die. He does not believe he can live forever unless he is a religious person who thinks God is taking care of his after life. I hope all that is true but like many, have serious doubts, which the preachers say disqualifies me to go anyway.

I came upon my conviction of the possibilities for extended life by reading and study, but Joe doesn't read that much science. He'd rather watch the NFL or NBA. I love the NFL and have high hopes for Mike Vick and the Falcons, but when I watch the game I return to something more thoughtful. I read the thoughts of people with the brain power I dream of and I believe a good bit of it, but Joe never reads anything but fiction, that takes him away from his mundane existence and lets him hunt creatures from other worlds or make love to beautiful women. So how do we get Joe to support the research and people who can do all the amazing things we know are possible. How do we get Joe to write his congressman for funds for these scientists? We have to get Joe thinking about bio-sciences as they may help him live longer or forever. I hope to help this way.

I wrote a science fiction adventure book dealing with all the ramifications of the science of longevity and beyond. It's not far out

of today's science and a good yarn. I'm hoping it will catch on with the general reader and put some twinkle of hope in his mind, that he too could live an extended life span, healthy and sexy.

I use Joe in this blog, but the four characters in the book are divided into two women and a self aware female computer named Fanny, all female and one lone man, all lost in time with no other humans on earth. It's a sexy adventure sure to stir the hearts and minds of Joe and Jane Six-pack. I know Jane because I am her in almost everyway.

Check out LUCIAN'S PLACE by Belle Smith. You can find me at I think you will see how my book promotes longevity research and all the things that go with: Life and Happiness.


Posted by: Belle Smith at February 22nd, 2006 8:26 AM

There's a school of thought that says you don't have to reach Joe at all - that you need to get the billionaire funders on your side and Joe hears about the results via the news and health information industry. I don't subscribe to that school of thought - I think that getting the Joes of the world on board (at least to the same point at which they're on board with general health) is vital to create a climate in which billionaires are willing to invest.

How do you reach them? Through the same mechanisms used by patient advocates for heart disease or cancer: work the press, outreach, enlist the health information industry, build volunteer organizations, and so forth. It's all been done before for many other causes, which gives me confidence that we'll continue to make progress for serious anti-aging research.

Posted by: Reason at February 22nd, 2006 7:41 PM

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