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Patient Advocate Shares What's Ahead in Stem Cell Research and Treatments

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Published on April 24, 2019

On-site in San Diego at the 5th Annual UCSD Division of Regenerative Medicine Symposium, Patient Power founder Andrew Schorr is joined by Robert “Bob” Klein, founder and chairman of Americans for Cures. Bob, a patient advocate inspired by his own family - wife with cancer, son with type 1 diabetes and mother with Alzheimer’s - to help patients and families facing chronic conditions and work toward a cure. Watch as he discusses his advocacy work and initiatives to raise funds for stem cell research and drive treatment developments forward.

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Transcript | Patient Advocate Bob Klein Shares What's Ahead in Stem Cell Research and New Treatments for Chronic Illnesses

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That's how you’ll get care that's most appropriate for you.

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you.

And my mother shortly thereafter was diagnosed with Alzheimer's, and she lost all connection with everyone she knew in the world including her family, with me, with my children.  So as a father and as a son I was really passionately mandated through my own consciousness to act within my capacity to try and change the future for my family.  I saw this through a group of patients from different diseases that came together.  As my family was like every other family, we would only over time understand, whether it was heart or cancer or Alzheimer's we would go through, but we would face this.  

And we have a pivotal time in history but particularly in California which rated in the world as the second greatest biotech research capacity, we had an opportunity to change that future.  A critical historical opportunity to reduce human suffering.  And for a father watching his son go through this it became an imperative for me to write that initiative and chair the campaign and chair the state agency that advanced the research to cures in some patients that you've now met.  

It is the ultimate goal and with this frontier of medicine with genomics and stem cells and personalized medicine, precision medicine we have an opportunity that mankind has never had. 

In California, we have the unique opportunity that in 2020 we're going to be able to renew this mandate that goes directly to every family's future by potentially having another initiative, this time for 5 billion that will continue these phenomenal human trials that are under way, 51 human trials right now, many of them in cancer that the state’s agency is finding, 23 more where the agency call CIRM, California Institute of Regenerative Medicine, has funded the initial research while I was chairman in many cases and is now the human trials being funded by someone else, and another 50 translational grants where they're reaching for FDA approval of Phase 1 trials.  

We are at a point of incredible potential where if patient advocates come forward in every community, with their chambers, with their civic groups, and talk about and learn about what the stem cell funding agency in California has done there is a potential to renew this mandate and to drive forward California's solution for its families, for the country and the world at a time when the federal government and their funding is paralyzed by leadership issues.  

Bob Klein, I want to thank you really from the bottom of my heart for the work you've done on behalf of your son, your mother, your wife and all of us.  Thank you so much.  

On location in San Diego, Andrew Schorr with Bob Klein.  Remember, knowledge and action can be the best medicine of all.  

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you.