Rapid change of a cohort of 570 unproven stem cell clinics in the USA over 3 years

Regen Med. 2019 Aug;14(8):735-740. doi: 10.2217/rme-2019-0064. Epub 2019 Aug 28.


Aim: The industry of unproven stem cell clinics has rapidly mushroomed throughout the USA, posing risks to patients and the research field. In this study, the aim was to better define how this industry changes. Methods: I analyzed a large cohort of US stem cell clinic firms and their distinct clinic locations as defined in 2015-2016 for their status now in 2019. Results: About a quarter of the firms no longer marketed stem cells. Some lacked active websites, while others dropped stem cell services. Even so, the total number of clinics in this group increased because some firms greatly expanded their clinic numbers. Conclusion: Overall, the unproven clinic industry is a moving target requiring ongoing study and regulatory oversight.

Keywords: FDA; bioethics; regenerative medicine; stem cell clinics.

MeSH terms

  • Health Facilities / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Health Facilities / standards
  • Health Facilities / trends*
  • Humans
  • Stem Cell Transplantation / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Stem Cell Transplantation / standards
  • Stem Cell Transplantation / trends*
  • Stem Cells*
  • United States
  • United States Food and Drug Administration