- Q: Does The Riddle Institute use human embryonic stem cells?
A: No, The Riddle Institute takes a firm stance and will not use human embryonic stem cells. The stem cells we use are harvested mesenchymal stem cells taken from the patient’s own bone marrow. Dr. Riddle is a professing Christian and his convictions guide him in valuing human life. Some equine (horse) and murine (mouse) stem cells are used for research purposes only.
- Q: Do you accept donations?
A: No, using the successful pharmaceutical industry as a model, The Riddle Institute was created as a for-profit research institution. The method of funding medical research is currently going through some fundamental changes. Due to the unsustainable cost of Obamacare, grants to organizations doing research are drying up. Without the necessary funds, we have seen many worthwhile projects die. It is the consensus of the founders of The Riddle Institute for Regenerative Medicine, that for-profit research labs are more efficient at finding solutions than those that rely on grants.
- Q: How can I invest?
A: The Riddle Institute for Regenerative Medicine (RIRM) is structured in such a way as to allow individual investors to invest in specific projects. Each project will have its own associated limited liability company (LLC). RIRM is an umbrella company currently encompassing eight separate project-driven companies and retains 50% ownership interest in each. To further pursue investment opportunities, please contact Dr. Riddle. There is currently an investment opportunity opening in pancreas research. The Riddle Institute is working to engineer insulin producing pancreatic tissue using stem cells and pancreatic tissue bioscaffolds for transplant that would be a long term treatment for type 1 diabetes.
- Q: How do I apply to be considered as a candidate for treatment?
A: Email RIRM with a brief description of your current illness requiring therapy along with contact information. Your info will then be put into a database for consideration as soon as all testing has been completed.
- Q: Can you regenerate Hearts? Livers? Other organs?
A: RIRM is currently focused on lung regeneration in collaboration with UTMB, the pancreas for treatment of type 1 diabetes, aortic heart valves, and chondrocyte stem cells for joint repair. Future plans are intended for additional projects such as heart and liver regeneration but are not currently in development.
- Q: What are the risks associated with this technology?
A: As with any tissue transplant or surgical procedure, there is always the risk of infection and rejection of tissues. Fortunately, the technologies being developed by the Riddle Institute to create tissues for transplantation, uses stem cells harvested from the recipient. Essentially, the donor and recipient are one and the same which results in custom made tissues for transplant. This process greatly reduces and/or eliminates the need for immunosuppressive drug therapy (ISDT). ISDT is necessary in current transplantations to prevent the recipient’s body from rejecting transplanted foreign donor tissue. The unfortunate side-effect of many ISD’s is they can induce a state of immunodeficiency, which in turn makes the body vulnerable to many common infections & diseases as well as compromises the body’s own cancer immunosurveillance.
- Q: How do stem cells know how to turn into specific other cells?
A: The micro-structure of the bioscaffold along with specific growth factors direct the stem cells to differentiate into their specific tissue cells.
- Q: Is there a chance that the tissue will be rejected by the patient?
A: RIRM takes great care in reducing the risk of rejection inherent in tissue transplantation. The bioscaffolds used in the generation of the tissue are not immunogenic and the stem cells are harvested from the transplant recipient. This method for growing tissue greatly reduces the risk of rejection.