Trial begins in Sweden in trachea artery stem cell transplant case – The Journal
A surgeon who made headlines in 2011 for performing the world’s first stem cell trachea transplants at Sweden’s biggest hospital is on trial for aggravated assault on three of his patients
STOCKHOLM (AP) — An Italian surgeon who made headlines in 2011 for performing the world’s first stem cell trachea transplants at Sweden’s largest hospital went on trial Wednesday charged with aggravated assault against three of his patients.
Stem cell scientist Dr. Paolo Macchiarini, who was once considered a leading figure in regenerative medicine, is credited with creating the world’s first trachea partially made from a patient’s own stem cells.
In December 2018, Sweden decided to reopen a previously dropped investigation into three cases. Additional written evidence was obtained and further interviews were held with people in Sweden, Belgium, Great Britain, the United States and Spain.
The former surgeon appeared in Solna District Court on Wednesday, but is expected to give evidence first on Friday. His lawyer, Björn Hurtig, believes Macchiarini’s former employer, Sweden’s prestigious Karolinska Institute, should be held accountable, Swedish broadcaster SVT said.
Macchiarini was fired from the Karolinska Institute in March 2016 for violating medical ethics after being accused of falsifying his CV and misrepresenting his work.
When Macchiarini’s first trachea transplant was reported in the medical journal Lancet in 2008, it was hailed as a breakthrough in regenerative medicine. Macchiarini’s new airway – partly made from the patient’s own stem cells – was meant to herald a new era where new organs could be made in the lab.
Despite an independent commission in Sweden finding numerous problems with Macchiarini’s work, the Lancet has so far refused to withdraw the study.
Macchiarini previously disputed the charges, saying they were false.
He operated on 20 Macchiarini patients to provide them with an artificial trachea – from countries including Spain, Russia, Iceland, Britain and the United States. ‘ terms.
In 2019, an Italian court sentenced Macchiarini to 16 months in prison for forgery and abuse of office.