Zannos Grekos: Unsafe at any speed
Zannos Grekos, the fast-driving, money-motivated cardiologist behind Regenocyte, is watching as his defense disintegrates in the administrative action filed against him by the Florida state medical board. First, the bereaved husband of the elderly woman who died after Grekos apparently shot a bolus of bone marrow aspirate into her carotid artery recently alleged that the signature on the informed consent forms was not hers. Now, Grekos’ attorney, Greg Chaires, has quit the defense less than two months before the hearing, which is scheduled for next month. Chaires has only stated that he has “good cause” for the abrupt departure. Sounds like Big Pharma got to him! Alert the ICMS!

Actually, no. It sounds more like the Grekos defense is a travesty that has quickly unraveled, and was evidently not all that tenable to begin with. 

To review, Grekos started his stem cell career as a player at TheraVitae, a Bangkok-based profit scheme that offered processed autologous bone marrow cells for heart and vascular repair founded by Don Margolis. Regenocyte also originally limited its range of treatment claims (at least the ones on its website) to cardiovascular conditions, but it was not long before the treatment creep/market expansion began, as Grekos realized that his Regenocyte-branded slurries could be used to extract cash from patients suffering from a much broader spectrum of conditions. The company website currently boasts that he has treated over 200 patients (which means more than $1.3 million in revenue at Regenocyte’s going rate of $65,000) whose only inclusion criteria appears to have been having the ante needed to roll the Regenodice. The recent victim, for example, got her regenocytes for symptoms including numbness and tingling.

And, protestations by the medical board notwithstanding, the company continues to have  ambitions to explore even bolder new lucrative markets medical horizons.

So in addition to his claims to “brave maverick doctor” status in cardiovascular medicine, the star of this Greek tragedy has the hubris to suggest his regenocytes are being developed for an astounding range of diseases any one of which has resisted the real efforts of thousands of real scientists to find real cures.  

Dr. Grekos is also board certified in souvlaki and baklava.
What we need to recognize about ZG is that he seems to think he can achieve this kind of medical miracle in his spare time. Because in addition to his regenocompany, Grekos (along with his wife Athina Kyritsis) runs the Greek restaurant, Greek Gourmet, and managed or manages a small empire of other businesses, including the failed marina Gawn Fishin’, a personnel company, a dissolved venture called Twin Screws, another called Alligator Bight, and a host of building and real estate schemes with too intricate and interlocked a corporate structure to do justice in words.

“What can I say? I like to keep busy!”

The final hearing in his case is scheduled for March 20-23, although it is not clear  whether this date will be pushed back due to the recent loss of his lawyer. Having had two patients die under his care already, it is past time for Dr Grekos to concentrate his efforts on moussaka, or real estate development, or gator wrasslin’, or anything really, as long as it doesn’t jeopardize any more innocent lives.