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Title: Toolised medicine : an anthropological study of 'experimental' cell therapy during a period of regulatory change in China
Author: Su, Yeyang
ISNI:       0000 0004 7967 4066
Awarding Body: University of Sussex
Current Institution: University of Sussex
Date of Award: 2019
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Between December 2011 and autumn 2015, Chinese health authorities developed new regulations for stem cell clinical research. During this period, all pre-existing stem cell clinical research and practices were halted, and no permission was given to new project applications. Nevertheless, other biotechnologies, including immunotherapy, continued to be developed and offered in China. My fieldwork, from early 2014 to mid-2015, allowed me to learn how this regulatory change affected the life and work of some Chinese patients, researchers, health care professionals, biotech entrepreneurs, industry analysts and investors, and how differently each group understood, valued, and in some cases, used stem cell- and immune cell- therapy. Nevertheless, I noted then, and contend in this thesis that what the developers and users of 'experimental' cell therapy all valued and worked with was the medicinal potentiality of these cells. In the making and use of cell-based medicinal products, the users and developers integrated their own values and purposes that derived both from within, and outside of, the medical arena. In other words, the developers and users conceptualised and used cell-based medicine like a "tool" to address particular issues rising from specific situations - not just for health reasons. I develop the concepts of "toolised medicine" and "tooling work" to depict and analyse this "tool-like" feature and use of biomedicine, and use these concepts to reassess China's recent regulatory change in this field. In so doing, I contribute to social science theorisation and studies of biomedicine.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: DS701 China ; R856 Biomedical engineering. Electronics. Instrumentation ; RA0418 Medicine and society. Social medicine. Medical sociology