After days of silence, the Winnipeg medical researcher who charged MS patients thousands for overseas stem cell treatment says he’s been “unfairly accused and victimized by inaccurate media reporting” and looks forward to clearing his name.

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This article was published 23/1/2015 (2679 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

After days of silence, the Winnipeg medical researcher who charged MS patients thousands for overseas stem cell treatment says he’s been "unfairly accused and victimized by inaccurate media reporting" and looks forward to clearing his name.

In a statement sent to local media Friday morning, Doug Broeska, owner of Regenetek Research says media reports that he falsified his credentials, overstated the effects of the stem cell clinical trial, failed to follow up with patients and was recently asked to step down as the study’s researcher are false.

Doug Broeska

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Doug Broeska

He also enclosed a notarized copy of his PhD certificate from Brightland University, which is not accredited in Canada, the United States or the United Kingdom. Brightland’s website includes no contact or location information, spells “Brightland” incorrectly and is linked to a well–known degree mill operator

He said he stands by his role in the "case-based study" where his job was to track patients for follow-up. He said he has not breached ethical standards and did not give medical advice to patients.

He also enclosed a notarized copy of his PhD certificate from Brightland University, which is not accredited in Canada, the United States or the United Kingdom. Brightland’s website includes no contact or location information, spells "Brightland" incorrectly and is linked to a well-known degree mill operator.

Broeska’s degree certificate, notarized by Liya Akalu, a notary public in Washington, D.C., includes a stamp saying the oath was sworn before her Dec. 15, 2015, a date that has not yet occurred.

Broeska originally claimed to have a BSc and a PhD from the University of Manitoba. Neither is true.

"Dr. Broeska regrets any misperception that may have resulted from referencing a PhD from the University of Manitoba on his LinkedIn page," said the statement. "He did attend three years of classes at the University of Manitoba but did not receive a degree there."

Broeska also said it’s not uncommon to ask patients to pay for clinical trials, which are voluntary.

"There is significant cost to conduct the research and administer the treatment and follow up especially since the research is being conducted at a hospital in Pune, in India," said Broeska. "The reason why India was selected is because it has enabling legislation that permits and supports this method of research. Canada and the U.S. do not have medical regulations that support private stem cell treatment trials. These are the reasons why Health Canada is not involved in overseeing this research."

Broeska also said he personally funded some of the study’s startup costs, and reiterated that Regenetek is a not-for-profit company. He said some patients had their treatment subsidized.

"The bottom line is that Regenetek has never rejected a participant because they could not pay the full amount," said Broeska. "Clearly, if Regenetek was conducting medical tourism it would not accept participants who could not pay their fee in full."

Broeska said he is not aware of any RCMP investigation into Regentek, or one by the Canada Revenue Agency. He said two people who have filed RCMP complaints about Regenetek "were not enrolled in the study and may have a competitive financial motive to try to diminish the company’s achievements and tarnish its reputation."