Bartolo Colon Stem Cell Network

By Chris Centeno, MD /

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bartolo colon stem cells

About 2 years ago, a second national network with an orthopedic focus, StemMD burst on the stem cell scene. Calling themselves a “National Regenerative Medicine Practice” they featured Joe Purita, M.D. as their leader, highlighting the Bartolo Colon stem cell treatment. The StemMD network is one of several groups trying to emulate Regenexx. When you hit their web-site, you get either a solicitation for a study or a live chat. The site says it has assembled a group of “World Recognized Leaders and Pioneers”. It all looks like there’s something there, but how is this group different from Regenexx?

Here’s what I know:

-The group runs a service for physicians who want to market their use of stem cells. The physicians are not part of a “National Regenerative Medicine Practice”. The web-site tries to connect an interested patient with a physician who is willing to allow the company to take a fee for that placement and who has a pre-arranaged marketing agreement with the company.

-I have checked into the status of their orthopedic IRB approvals for research, these are not active. The group has no formal method for data collection nor follow-up. There has been no reporting of nor publication of any data collected.

-The group offers a short training course that was run by Joe Purita. No specific training or accreditation is offered by procedure nor by body part.

-The group has no ability to perform it’s own lab research nor improve upon lab procedures, see above.

As I’ve said for years, there’s Regenexx and then there’s everything else. We have a national provider network with an acceptance rate of 2-3% of interested physicians who want to join. We set standards that these physicians must follow and then train and support them. We spend huge resources on lab innovations, clinical research, and education. We publish that research on our web-site and in peer reviewed publications. Nobody else does this at the level we’re doing it-nobody. More on the comparison above (click on that image to enlarge).

The upshot? It was a huge surprise to me that StemMD was really a business web-site selling procedures rather than a “National Regenerative Medicine Practice”. I guess as they say, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery”…

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Chris Centeno, MD

Regenexx Founder

Chris Centeno, MD is a specialist in regenerative medicine and the new field of Interventional Orthopedics. Centeno pioneered orthopedic stem cell procedures in 2005 and is responsible for a large amount of the published research on stem cell use for orthopedic applications.
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Regenerative procedures are commonly used to treat musculoskelatal trauma, overuse injuries, and degenerative issues, including failed surgeries.
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