The city will host a two-day conclave and exhibition on stem cell therapy from Saturday.
Actor Lisa Ray, who recently recovered from multiple myeloma, a plasma cell cancer, will recount her story of healing with the help of stem cell therapy.
Stem cells, which have the potential to develop into many different cell types in the body, serve as an internal repair system could be used for treating heart diseases, spinal cord injury and many other diseases.
“Stem cell therapy, when coupled with conventional medicine, can be beneficial to patients suffering from serious diseases. Yet, not many are aware that such an alternate treatment exists,” said Chaitanya Purandare, one of the panelists at the conclave being held to create awareness on the therapy and discuss the challenges it faces.
The exhibition, which is open for all, will spread awareness on stem cell storage, the treatment and the industry.
Stem cells can be sourced from an embryo, or an adult’s bone marrow, tissues, muscles and from the umbilical cord blood after delivery. “We have less than 10 cord blood banks in India and awareness is one of the biggest challenges facing the industry,” said Dr Mrinalini Chaturvedi, who has set up a cord blood stem cell bank in Gurgaon.
While stem cells research application is conducted since the past 10 years, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has issued a set of general principles for research on humans, but a formulation of guidelines for stem cell research and therapy is yet to be issued.
Dr VM Katoch, secretary of the department of health research, ICMR, will be one of the panelists at the conclave.