In the spirit of acting with integrity and giving everyone a fair chance, please find below a response to the AITSE article Stem Cell Charlatans, sent in to us by Habib Torfi, CEO at Invitrx. Our reply (with evidence) to each of Habib’s paragraphs (italicized and in green) follows that paragraph.
Dear Dr. Caroline Crocker,
I was forwarded a link to your article entitled Stem Cell Charlatans and wanted to take this opportunity to offer a few corrections as well invite you to the lab at Invitrx to see the facility, as well as discuss the science, at your convenience.
Dear Mr. Torfi,
Thank you for your email and invitation to visit Invitrx labs. A team of us from AITSE would be pleased to do so at some time. Meanwhile, we thought it would only be fair to post your email, where you defend yourself and Invitrx, on our website. Please allow us to also offer some responses: our goal is to check where we may be in error and clarify where we may have been misleading.
I have attached my resume for your edification.
Thank you for attaching your resume, although we were already in possession of the same. Your resume is, in part, why we challenged your claims concerning your formal education, i.e., a “graduate degree in Human genetics” and a list of your “peer-reviewed” publications. We have included part of it. with highlighting added, for the benefit of our readers. We saw nothing in your resume that corroborated your claim of a graduate degree.
NCA certification, while it is a qualification, is not a degree. After all, according to the Dominguez Hills website, it only takes a year to complete. If we have understated or overlooked some qualifications, please feel free to provide the evidence.
Also, with respect to what appears to be a claim of “133 peer-reviewed publications,” only four of such publications were listed and it appears that only two such articles were “peer-reviewed” and, as to those, you were but a contributing author. Note the Pubmed search of your name revealed only those two articles (appended to the excerpt from your resume above).
Please note that abstracts submitted to, and papers presented at, scientific meetings are not peer-reviewed publications. Nor are papers published on line. We have highlighted the relevant words in the article titles, so you will see 131 of the 133 articles you list are indeed not “peer-reviewed publications.” We are sorry if this comes as a disappointment to you.
In various articles you site, my credentials as Ph.D. or M.D. I’d like to note that none of those articles were authored by me nor was I aware of them. Secondarily, the entities that have written these articles have no affiliation with Invitrx.
It is true that the sites that say Habib Torfi, PhD were not authored by you, but we are surprised to note that, although you are aware of the lawsuit, you claim to be unaware of the article published about the lawsuit. It is equally astounding that you are on record as having signed your name as Habib Torfi, PhD, as shown here, and that Dr. Newman, who was a business colleague, repeatedly called you Dr. Torfi in his “public record” opposition—perhaps you were unaware of this, as well?
With regard to Joanne Kurzbeurg MD’s comment: I would like to offer the following links: ClinicalTrials.gov. or http://hematopoiesis.info/2012/01/04/cell-therapy-trials-2011/ There are many firms involved in clinical trials on stem cell therapies outside of bone marrow transplant, Cytori being one of them.
According to Dr. Kurzbeurg, we are ten years away from stem cell therapy being beneficial for anything except bone marrow transplants. Note that Dr. Kurzbeurg did not say that there is no one who is currently engaged in research on stem cell therapies. Certainly, it seems that Cytori’s Dr. Marc Hedrick is actively publishing in that area. Fascinating that the Cytori website itself is more about investing than about science…but that is a subject for another day.
Below, please see Dr. Ranjan Gupta’s credentials and publication: http://www.orthopaedicsurgery.uci.edu/faculty/gupta.html http://www.orthopaedicsurgery.uci.edu/PeripheralNerveLab/pubs.html
Thank you for pointing these sites out. We have corrected our erroneous assertion and removed Dr. Gupta from the list.
Dr. Kadri is an ENT and not a Cardiovascular surgeon. I have never made a claim that he is anything other than an ENT. http://xcelltherapy.com/bio.php
Neither did AITSE claim that Dr Kadri is a cardiovascular surgeon, just that we could find no record of publications by a Dr. Z Kadri in any area besides cardiology. But since that person lives in Paris, it is probably
the wrong person. However, since the site to which you refer us mentions his “peer-reviewed publications in top medical and research journals,” perhaps you would point us to one?
The before and after shots you posted are from AVEYOU Beauty Boutique, a company that we have never done business with.
This is a strange allegation because the photographs were obtained from the Invitrx website, as can be seen in the screenshot. Are you saying that you “borrowed” the photos in order to promote your product falsely? Otherwise how do you explain them being on your site? These photographs can also be found in your video. This is the self-same video where you explain that Invitrx now has an operating room where you have done plastic and orthopedic surgery and plan on treating Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. While not being an MD?
Buyrelumatoday.com is an unaffiliated site and the content of their site was drafted by the owners of the same company in certain other articles you recite. Scott Kimball and Vesitage, Inc. have purchased product from Invitrx and that is the extent of the relationship.
We are aware that Buyrelumatoday is not an official part of Invitrx, but are skeptical that the relationship is a distant as you claim. After all, Vestiage and Buy Reluma Today use a web designer and publicist who also appears in numerous videos with you. Similarly, in this evite we are invited to a Stem Cell Supply Event hosted by her, where it is said that you will appear. Therefore, it is not unreasonable to suppose that the outrageous scientific claims appearing on the Buyrelumatoday site were authored by you. Interestingly, these claims have now been removed from the site, but the remnants are still viewable by performing a Google search.
The Anderson case mentioned has not been settled, but suffice it to say, as with most law suits, attorneys bring in as many defendants as possible, even though facts prove otherwise. I can’t comment any more on that case as it is still in the system.
Neither will we comment on the lawsuit, except to say that we will be following its progress with interest.
You stated that we claimed that skin cells can be turned into stem cells by injecting four genes. I never made that claim.
Yes, you did. Please click on the link and listen to what you say. Memo
Again, I would like to invite you to the Invitrx laboratory facility and would be more than pleased to discuss any and all of your assertions and appreciate the extent of our work. Thank you.
Habib Torfi – CEO Invitrx Therapeutics
There you have it folks. Please feel free to pass this on if you know anyone using products made by Invitrx. It is important that the public is aware of the science—and the bunk.