Sceptics might raise their eyebrows about a company that seeks to save and restore lives and at the same time turn a profit.

They may also wonder about Stemedica's heavy reliance on a Russian team of scientists instead of Americans.

Stemedica says on its website that its physicians have "conducted stem cell transplantation with over 1,500 human subjects."

Stemedica's spokesman David McGuigan declined to address specific questions we had for Dr. Howe and Dr. Tankovich, but promised they would be answered at the next press conference which will be held when the Brown-Darrell clinic opens in October or November.

Mr. McGuigan, Stemedica's vice president, marketing and business management, did, however, share some information with us about the firm. He said that some of the researchers from Russia "are considered pioneers in the world for stem cells."

He also cited plastic surgeon Dr. Eugenio Gandolfi, who is based in Italy and is a member of Stemedica's board of advisors, as an example of the top medical talent to which Stemedica has access. McGuigan said Dr. Gandoli is considered "the leader in using stem cells for skin and scar rejuvenation."

He added: "We've gone out and identified scientists and researchers who are best in class, best in practice and listed them as either consultants and or members of our scientific advisory board.

"That's a critical thing to understand as you look at our team like that because a lot of the best technology or the best research being done on stem cells wasn't been done in the United States. We do have a great relationship, as an example with The Burnham Institute...

"You'll find the Burnham is leading the way in the United stem cell research. We've got a Burnham research partner here in our conference room right now with our entire team going through some markers that we are putting on stem cells and different mediums being used to grow them.

"What we've done is gone out and tried to find best in class researchers and physicians who are already involved in stem cells and to make them part of our team, rather than trying to hire them full time to be here in San Diego."

Mr. McGuigan confirmed Stemedica is a for-profit company and added: "I think it's really important to know that in our mission statement our whole goal is to try to help save and restore lives.

"We believe that if we do our job in taking the best research that's out there and collectively trying to organize some of the best research and medical minds about how we can bring the power of stem cells to bear on a whole host of medical conditions then we can help improve and restore the quality of health for millions of people around the world.

"Every for-profit company is in business to provide a return on investment for the shareholders. Ours is really pushing the position in a way that says: 'Every dollar we take in we're reinvesting in trying to bring the successful power of stem cells towards helping humanity'.

"We have a real philosophic wrap to our company. We're very dedicated to trying to advance science and medicine through mastering the potential of the adult stem cell.

"We're trying our hardest to try and do well and do good at the same time."