CELL THERAPY AND REGENERATIVE MEDICINE
Certainly among the most exciting, yet controversial areas of biotechnology are cell therapy and regenerative medicine. The FDA defines cell therapy as, “The prevention, treatment, cure or mitigation of disease or injuries in humans by the administration of autologous, allogeneic or xenogeneic cells that have been manipulated or altered ex vivo.” Thus, the goal of cell therapy, is to repair, replace or restore damaged tissues or organs. Stem cell technology is thought to hold the most potential for cell therapy. Regenerative medicine is broadly overlapping with cell therapy. It is a broad definition for innovative medical therapies that will enable the body to repair, replace, restore and regenerate damaged or diseased cells, tissues and organs. These research emphases include a variety of research areas such as stem cells, tissue engineering, biomaterials engineering, growth factors and trans-plantation science. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Safety report “2020—A New Vision: A Future for Regenerative Medicine” suggests that the field has the potential to exceed $500 billion within the next 20 years (Flannagan, 2007).
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