Prof Stuart Forbes introduces his research at the MRC Centre for Regenerative Medicine in the video below.

Video of Prof Stuart Forbes – Liver Stem Cells & Regeneration
  1. Are you involved in clinical trials?

    Yes. Together with Prof Philip Newsome (Birmingham University) the Forbes lab has developed and undertaken the so-called ‘REALISTIC’ study (REPEATED AUTOLOGOUS INFUSIONS OF STEM CELLS IN CIRRHOSIS): a multicentre, phase II, open label, randomised controlled trial of repeated infusions of autologous CD133+ bone marrow stem cells mobilized by G-CSF in patients with cirrhosis. This trial runs in Edinburgh, Birmingham and Nottingham and has finished recruiting 81 patients. The results of this trial are not known yet as monitoring patients as part of the follow-up phase is ongoing. More information about the trial can be found here.  The trial was registered at Current Controlled Trials on 18 November 2009 (ISRCTN number 91288089, EuDRACT number 2009-010335-41).

  2. Are you currently recruiting for other clinical trials?

    No. The Forbes lab may start another phase 2 trial next year. Should this go ahead, patients will be recruited locally (Edinburgh area) through the UK’s National Health System (NHS).

  3. Can I take part in a future clinical trial?

    Should the Forbes lab take part in future clinical trials, patients will be recruited locally through the UK’s National Health System (NHS).

  4. When will this stem cell based treatment become available?

    Unfortunately there are many research questions still unanswered. Also, the vigorous clinical trial process is strictly regulated to make sure treatments are effective and safe for patients. There are still a number of regulatory hurdles to pass before a treatment becomes available in the clinic. This is quite a long process unfortunately, it can easily take 10-15 years.

  5. Can you give me medical advice?

    Unfortunately Prof Stuart Forbes and his team cannot give medical advice or recommend on a specific stem cell therapy or trial. We do recommend you take advice of your local healthcare team.

  6. Where can I get more information?

    • Bile Duct Cancer: there is a very good charity called the AMMF Cholangiocarcinoma Charity. They offer support, advice and are well placed to provide you with up-to-date information.
    • Liver disease: the British Liver Trust provides very accurate and balanced information. They also have support groups and can help you find a group near you.
    • Stem cells and clinical trials: please see the Patients section on our website and follow the links.

  7. If I can’t take part in a clinical trial, can I help in other ways?

    Yes. Philanthropy in research is increasingly important as funding streams change. It is thanks to people like you that we are able to attract the brightest minds and provide world-class research facilities. If you wish to support the Forbes lab and their research efforts to better understand liver disease and cancer and help develop treatments, you can donate to CRM or to our dedicated ‘Liver and Bile Duct Cancer Fund’. Your contribution and support is much appreciated.

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