A top provider of stem cell therapy research for lung conditions, the Lung Institute, recently announced its new location, close to the metro Dallas area in Texas. The Institute has also hired Dr. Sreedevi Marakatham as the new clinic’s medical director, helping to bring alternatives for patients with chronic lung diseases, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pulmonary fibrosis, and interstitial lung disease.
Traditional treatment options have remained the same over the past three decades for lung disease, which is the third leading cause of avoidable death in the U.S. But this should change with the opening of the facility in April. It will provide lung disease patients with alternative treatments, with a reported average 82 percent of patients’ lives improved.
The Lung Institute is in the forefront of the fight against lung disease by giving patients an opportunity to improve their lives through a minimally invasive outpatient stem cell procedure.
“Dallas is a hub for cutting-edge medical advancements, so it was a natural fit for the Lung Institute to expand to this part of the country,” Ann Miller, the Lung Institute’s executive vice president, said in a press release. “We also found that many patients are traveling from these areas, so the closer we can move to those who need our help the better able we are to serve them.”
As Texas law requires, the Dallas clinic has been IRB-approved for research protocols and stem cell procedures, and has been fully accredited by the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Program (AAHRPP). IRB approval and AAHRPP accreditation are critical to patient protection in recent areas of medicine by ensuring that facilities follow the proper requirements in medical and administrative dimensions of the process.
“When I heard about the Lung Institute, I was very interested to learn about alternative methods of patient care, especially when we can do something for severe COPD cases; whereas in conventional medicine, we don’t have an answer,” Marakatham said.
Marakatham’s specialty is internal medicine. Before working for the Lung Institute she was a primary care physician who saw many COPD patients. “With this stem cell research facility in Dallas we are going in at a cellular level to help patients. If there is one thing I enjoy most about my job, it’s when I hear from patients about how they feel better after treatment.”
The Lung Institute reports that 84 percent of the COPD patients experienced an improvement in quality of life after receiving the Institute clinic’s treatment for three months. In addition, 48 percent of those patients reported experiencing no less than a 10 percent increase in pulmonary function, with a 16 percent increase on average. The Lung Institute is now studying how stem cell therapy impacts other pulmonary conditions.
“In my practice I used to see a lot of COPD patients, most prescribed conventional treatment methods like inhalers and steroids, which come with various side effects,” Marakatham said. “In severe cases, patients faced a lung transplant, but not all patients want to proceed with that. This is really a hope for such patients. When I heard about the Lung Institute’s success rate, and how stem cell therapy is really helping patients lead a better life, I was very much interested in joining to be able to truly make a difference in these patients’ lives.”
The Lung Institute was founded in 2013 in Tampa, Florida, and also has clinics in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Nashville, Tennessee; and Scottsdale, Arizona.