1360. A Sense of Incongruity about Possible Loss of Personal Identity Due to Allogeneic/Xenogeneic Cell Transplantation for Cerebral Disorder

Authors: Hideo Shichinohe, MD (Sapporo, Japan)

Introduction:

A recent breakthrough in cell therapy is expected to cure the neurological symptoms associated with various brain disorders. However, the issue concerning patientspersonal identity, especially those who undergo allogeneic/xenogeneic cell transplantation, was hardly considered at all. The aim of the present study is to analyze the status quo about allogeneic/xenogeneic cell transplantation. Moreover, the personal identity of patients who undergo cell transplantation is discussed from an ethical point of view based on “Relation R” from “Reasons and Persons” written by Derek Parfit.

Methods:

In the present study, the status quo about allogeneic/xenogeneic cell transplantation is analyzed. Moreover, the personal identity of patients who undergo cell transplantation is discussed from an ethical point of view based on “Relation R” from “Reasons and Persons” written by Derek Parfit.

Results:

Since the late 1980s, there have been lots of patients with chimeric brain because of allogeneic/xenogeneic cell transplantation to the brain. In Japan, although studies on autologous cell transplantation have preceded, clinical trials for allogeneic cell transplantation have increased in number. If a patient with severe disturbance of consciousness or dementia is treated with allogeneic/xenogeneic cell transplantation, but not autologous cell transplantation, the reason behind the improved consciousness or cognitive function would be the patient’s chimeric brain and any “Relation R” would not exist before and after the treatment. If vague sense of incongruity occurs in the patient, it would come from the absence of “Relation R.”

Conclusion:

In conclusion, although the chimeric state is as common as medical treatment including organ and bone marrow transplantation, brain is in a unique position in terms of ethics as an organ with a chimeric state.