SmartCell Center: Past and Present
Following successful animal trials started in the 1970’s by a group of young scientists at the National Medical University, in 1985, the clinic founders started working with stem cells and later applying them in clinical practice. They were prompted by the experimental work with animals that had proved positive impact of stem cells harvested from animal fetuses on neurodystrophy in denervated organs and tissues. In 1987, stem cells were applied by the clinic founders, for the first time, for treatment of cytostatic myelodepression and aplastic anemia in the National Medical University of Ukraine.
In 1991, after obtaining the permission of the Ukrainian Health Ministry, stem cells started to be widely used for different diseases and conditions such as dystrophy, diseases causing cell deficit, sclerosis and malignant processes. A group of doctors developed and introduced a reliable and safe method of stem cell treatment that proved effective for certain diseases and conditions and showed good results in different patients. At the same time, no side effects or complications were reported, which allowed for extension of the range of diseases in which stem cell therapy could be applied.
We were the first in the world to develop our own stem cell treatment protocols for such diseases as multiple sclerosis, diabetes, and autism.
In 1994, our extensive clinical experience led to the launching of the world’s first specialized cell therapy center that used stem cells for therapeutic purposes, in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Over the years, we have performed more than 9,400 stem cell transplantations to patients from 93 countries around the world. Our treatment has helped to save and prolong patients’ lives, restore their tissue and organ functions, and achieve positive results in treating diseases in which routine methods have proved ineffective.
All stem cell treatment methods used at the clinic are patent-protected in different countries. The clinic was the first in the world to obtain patents for clinical application of stem cell suspensions: our first patent application dates back to October 18, 1993. Our patents cover methods of hematopoietic stem cell harvesting, creation of cell suspensions, treatment of autism, multiple sclerosis, diabetes mellitus, aplastic anemia, psoriasis, cancer etc.
Starting from 1994, we operated under a general license for medical practice. In 2011, a new regulation required all clinics working with stem cells to apply for a special license, the only one allowing legal manipulations with stem cells. The clinic was also the first in Ukraine to receive the state license for fetal cell bank operation.
BBC documentary called our clinic the “Last Hope Clinic” because we treated and followed-up the most complicated clinical cases from all over the world.
During the years of intensive work, the clinic team won international acclaim in the field of research and clinical application of stem cells. The clinic professionals authored more than 300 scientific works published in the national as well as international magazines and congress proceedings.
Today, the clinic consists of a Clinical Department and a laboratory complex operating in its own 1,200 sq m building with rooms offering patients comfort and hospitality.
The Clinical Department employs highly qualified, experienced doctors with different specializations who also hold scientific degrees and have numerous patents to their names. Our professional team of nurses and assistants completes our clinical department staff.
The Clinical Department offers both diagnostic (ultrasound, ECG, EchoCG, Doppler, spirography etc.) and consultative services.
The Laboratory Complex consists of five lab units functioning as a single department:
Clinical-Diagnostic Laboratory is a place where lab tests for diagnostic and follow-up purposes are performed and, if necessary, where the treatment regimen is adjusted (сomplete blood count, blood chemistry, cytology etc.).
Biotechnology Laboratory is a place where all kinds of stem cell suspensions are produced in accordance with original technology developed by our specialists.
Biotechnological stages of work with cell suspensions include:
Timely, safe, and ethically approved collection of high quality fetal material in gynecological departments.
Preparation of stem cell suspensions and putting them into sterile containers.
Viability testing of f stem cell suspensions.
Programmed cryopreservation of cell transplants.
Long-term storage of stem cell suspensions in cryobanks.
Creation of cell suspensions and their transplantation at the same facility is a perfect combination as it guarantees the high quality of the cell transplants and allows achieving the best effects.
R&D Department is a place where our specialists continually work on the advancement and improvement of stem cell suspension quality. Now, our specialists work on specification of each kind of cells suspension by applying flow cytometry and culturing in semi-liquid agar media (modified Pike and Robinson’s method). This will enable us to characterize differential activity and proliferative potential of the cells we use in the clinic and predict positive outcome of the treatment with more precision.
PCR Laboratory is a place where precise, high-quality regular and express tests take place for both clinical and biotechnological purposes. To ensure safety, our stem cell suspension are real-time PCR tested for multiple viruses and bacteria including HIV-1/2, HCV, HBV, CMV, YSV-1/2, Treponema pallidum, Chlamidium trachomatis, Mycoplasma genitalis, Ureaplasma Urealyticum and Parvum etc.
The Cryobank is a place where more than 10,000,000 individual samples of stem cell suspensions, the core of our treatment, are safely stored in a modern cryostorage facility. We use a unique method of programmed freezing allowing for preserving high quality of stem cell suspensions.
We care about our patients and our reputation worldwide. We keep up to date with modern technology and innovations and advance our methods of work in order to ensure the highest quality and safety standards of the cells. Our specialists in all fields continuously work on the advancement of stem cell suspension preparation and proper application technologies, they prepare new patents and write experience-based articles on different aspects of stem cell application, learn and introduce new methods and approaches. All of this is for the patient’s benefit. The best award for the clinic is successful treatment and improvements in our patients, their words of gratitude and smiles on their faces.