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New treatment for spinal injuries awaits human trial nod
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, AUG 22 (IANS):
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Published on 22 Aug. 2009 11:06 PM IST
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A doctor and a bio-technologist from Kerala have come up with an alternative treatment for patients with critical spinal injuries and are now awaiting clearance from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) to conduct human trials. P.S. John, an orthopaedist, and C.S. Poulose, a bio-technologist, claim to have successfully conducted trials on rats and rabbits at the department of neurosciences at the Cochin University of Science and Technology from 2002 to 2008. John, who retired as head of the department of orthopaedics from the Kottayam Medical College, said: “We have developed a treatment protocol where one’s own bone marrow cells and neurotransmitter (a hormone like chemical messenger that carries impulses from one nerve cell to the other) will be injected to the patient. Depending on the nature of injury, the injection could last a month or for 12 months.” The laboratory tests were done under the supervision of Poulose, who is director of neurosciences at the university. Their work has by now been presented at many international conferences and is accepted for publication in Current Science. The study team has already secured a patent on their technique in the country. Elaborating on the new method, John said: “Since we are using the patient’s own bone marrow, no ethical issues are involved. Moreover there will be no chance of adverse reactions or rejection reactions. The neurotransmitter combination that is used to modulate the bone marrow is naturally occurring amines in our system and hence will not produce any untoward effects.” The study team has secured written consent from hundreds of patients willing to undergo the clinical trials using the new technique. Speaking to IANS, 27-year-old George K. Thomas, who has been bed-ridden after a road accident in 2007, said: “I have tried various treatments and there is no change. I am prepared to go through the clinical trials of this new technique. I really wish they get the sanction for the trials.”

 
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