Friday, August 17, 2012

Veterinary Highlights: Were All Stem Cell Treatments Created Equal?

Stem cell treatment is gaining popularity. When we were considering it for Jasmine few years ago, it was hard to find much information or a veterinarian who had any experience with it.

Today, every other veterinary clinic in town has a big sign promoting stem cell treatment.

Jasmine had her treatments done through Vet-Stem, who have pioneered the treatment for dogs. Today, in-house kits are available to veterinarians.

Were all stem cell treatments created equal?

A study performed as independent research by INCELL indicates that perhaps not.

The study shows that incorrect counting of adipose derived SVF cells and the subset of regenerative stem cells can subsequently result in inaccurate dosing. Does that matter?

Overestimated cell numbers can have negative impact on the efficacy of the treatment.

Simply put, inadequate stem cell count, inadequate result. Dosage matters in any type of treatment. The study evaluated various cell counting methods and their potential shortcomings.

The authors of the study caution that great care must be taken when using kits and automated cell counting for stem cell dosing and cryobanking of cells intended for clinical use.

The study showed that the manual hemocytometer-DAPI method is the most accurate, but requires a highly experienced cell biologist or technician to make accurate counts and is not suitable for routine clinical use. In this study the most inaccurate counting came from the Cellometer.

If I'm going to go through the trouble and expense of stem cell treatment for my dog, I certainly want the treatment to work the way it should.

I'd want to know what cell counting method is used.

Full study:
Stem Cell Counting Methods Can Lead to Inaccurate Dosing

Related articles:
In The Beginning There Was Fat: From Vanity To Revolutionary Therapy 
Digging Deeper: The Science Behind Adipose Derived Stem Cell Therapy
Stem Cells for Dogs? Oh yeah, baby!
Interview with Dr. Robert J. Harman, D.V.M., M.P.V.M. - CEO and founder of Vet-Stem
Jasmine is Vet-Stem's poster child! 
Zeus Gets Stem Cell Treatment 
Jasmine Is Headed For Her Next Stem Cell Treatment 
Jasmine's Stem Cells Are In 
Running With The Wind: Trago's Elbow Dysplasia Surgery And Stem Cell Treatment


  1. This is a kind of good news for all dog owner's. As far as I know stem cell treatment is a kind of treatment for human. And there is also for our lovely dogs. But is it also expensive?

    1. Not much available for humans so far as I know. Available for dogs for some time now.

      It is relatively expensive, yes. It's a fancy treatment. Frankly, though, if your dog was to be on long term NSAIDs it would not end up much cheaper and the potential side effects can be quite bad.

      For many dogs who get this treatment this is their last resort. So while it is not cheap, it's definitely worth it in my opinion.

  2. I am haveing the stemcell therapy for my dog at willow creek animal hospital in reading pa they have thier own in house lab I have read that shipping the cells out result in 40% of cells dieing within 24hrs and the remaing cells being less active and viable this is my dogs last resorts she is 15yrs old and has bad hip displashia and her knees have both had surgery so I want her to have the best chance my estimate was$1300.00 to$1800.00 with the concultation being$50.00 wich is more afforadable than in lititz pa where the consult fee was $130.00 and the procedure est. Was starting at $2500.00 I was unaware of stem cell counting and will have to check on that .really hopeing this works and will improve her quality of life

    1. Best of luck to her, stem cell treatment certainly did awesome things for Jasmine and many other dogs.