05 PM | 04 Jun

Quack trial to #resurrect brain-dead folks moves to new location [#geekgirl]


Indian authorities last year pulled the plug on a dubious clinical trial aiming to reverse brain death in 20 people. But, it seems, the resolve of the trial’s leaders is undying. They have revived their plans and will announce a new trial in upcoming months that will take place somewhere in Latin America, Stat reports.

The trial, led by Philadelphia-based biotech firm Bioquark, aims to restore life to those declared clinically brain dead by using a slap-dash potpourri of methods—combining mesenchymal stem cell injections with peptides said to promote brain cell growth, transcranial laser therapy said to jump-start brain cells, and electrical stimulation of the median nerve (a major nerve that runs through the arm) to enliven the senses.

Individually, some of these interventions have hinted at potential benefits for some patient populations in preliminary research. For instance, early studies suggest that stem cell injections into the brain or spinal cord may help some with brain injuries. But there is no indication that the interventions—individually or together—can bring back brain-dead patients. Bioquark and partners have not even tested out their hodgepodge method on animals.

Source: ArsTechnica

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