Department of Clinical Science, Intervention and Technology, K57, Division of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Karolinska University Hospital, Huddinge Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden. Electronic address: [Email]
The present chapter summarizes our current knowledge on fetal stem cell and gene therapy. It focuses on these therapeutic alternatives in regard to past experiences and ongoing and planned studies in humans. Several methodological challenges are discussed that may have wide implications on how these methods could be introduced in clinical practices. Although still promising, the methods are afflicted with very special requirements not least in regard to safety and ethical questions. Furthermore, careful monitoring and extended follow-up of the child and his/hers mother who receive prenatal stem cell or gene treatments are of outmost importance. Taken these prerequisites into consideration, it is natural that this type of experimental fetal therapies requires collaboration between different disciplinaries and institutions within medicine.