If the stem cell treatment can work for the dogs, why it can’t work for the human? The question was raised by a dog-owner Glen Kothe whose pooch nursing a cartilage tear in the rear leg for a year was healed with a stem cell treatment.
The answer from the doctor for Kothe was simple enough stem cell therapy for human has been mired with politics, religion and a complicated process of approval. However, the case is not the same with animals.
According to Jeffrey Kahn, director of the University of Minnesota Center for Bioethics, it needs to rethought why animals have access to newer treatment. Further, it should be pointed out that a large amount of resources is being spend on animal health instead of supporting human health.
This could be easily explained, as animal research is easy and cheap. Again, scientists can easily get a large group to test when seeking to develop a new drug for animals.
For humans the case becomes complicated as there are greater number of attorneys representing humans than animals. Even a minor injury to humans can lead to a furor. Kahn explains that greater harms are done to the animals during animal testing. However, animals are the first to reap the benefits of the tests.
In certain cases the process gets reversed. for instance antibiotics were first for the humans and then used on animal.
Stem cells provides natural treatment morphing into the nerves, organs and other tissues. However, as stem cells are collected from embryos and embryonic stem cell research has been banned by U.S government since 1980s, humans have been deprived of the treatment.
Stem cell treatments has been increasingly used for animals. In this case the stem cells are not collected from the embryo, instead they are taken from a piece of animal’s fat, which is a good repository of stem cells. The cells are injected into the blood stream of the animals and the affected area. Stem cells seek out the tissue and heal the injury.
Glen and Sue Kothe’s dog Micah underwent several surgeries for no avail. The dog was suffering from constant pain. I t was then taken to Scanlon the owner of White Bear Animal Hospital and Otter Lake Animal Care Center in Hugo, certified for stem cell treatment. They removed two tablespoon of fat from the dog’s chest and after 48 hours concentrated stem cells were injected back to the dog. Micah’s wound were completely healed He is now 10 years old and still fast. However, Kothes still argues why this stem cell wouldn’t work on people.