September 29 2013 – Trial to determine if stem cells can help with rare lung disease

By Cindy Krischer Goodman

Jose Guzman began gasping for breath while using his treadmill on the lowest setting and knew something was wrong. His search for answers led him to the diagnosis of a rare lung disease with no cure.

Guzman, 72, who arrived from Cuba penniless and built a thriving Miami travel agency, doesn’t give up easily. He has signed on to be one of the first patients to participate in a clinical trial being launched at the University of Miami. Dr. Marilyn Glassberg has obtained approval from the Food and Drug Administration to launch the first U.S. clinical trial that will test whether mesenchymal stem cells given intravenously could be a therapy for patients with Guzman’s rare lung disease, known as idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. The disease strikes mostly men who are 55 and

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