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Success in a Joint Kadimastem–Tel Aviv University TrialJun. 13, 2016
The trial tested a novel development based on Kadimastem's cell therapy product for the treatment of diabetes and the technology for the production of advanced encapsulation materials of Dr. Tal Dvir from the Tel Aviv University
Ness Ziona, Israel, June 13, 2016, Israeli biotechnology company Kadimastem (TASE: KDST) reports success in a trial conducted with Dr. Tal Dvir, under a material evaluation agreement with Ramot, the technology transfer company of the Tel Aviv University. Dr. Dvir is an expert in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine in the Molecular Microbiology and Biotechnology Department in the Tel Aviv University's Faculty of Life Sciences.
The objective of the trial was to test a technology which will accelerate the development process of Kadimastem's cell therapy product for the treatment of diabetes.
In the trial, the company tested several novel sheathing materials, developed by Dr. Dvir, for the encapsulation, protection and support of the company's cell-based product. The trial's targets were achieved, and the cells were found to function in the encapsulation and to secrete insulin. The use of an encapsulation device is intended prevent rejection of the transplantation and allow the transplanted cells to function for a longer period, while remaining protected from the host's immune system.
Professor Michel Revel, Kadimastem's Chief Scientist, noted: "This joint collaboration will utilize novel nano-chemistry engineering to construct minuscule devices, which will be used to transplant the insulin-secreting cells produced by Kadimastem for diabetes treatment. The combination of these technologies is highly interesting."
Yossi Ben-Yossef, the company's CEO, added: "The success in the development of the device will greatly advance us toward a product, which will enable the transplantation of the unique insulin-secreting cells, produced by the company, in diabetes patients. We believe that the cells Kadimastem produces, transplanted with the help of the encapsulation device, will represent a breakthrough in the diabetes treatment field. We intend to arrive at a licensing agreement with Tel Aviv University."
Kadimastem is a biotechnology company, operating in the field of regenerative medicine – a groundbreaking field in which the malfunctioning of organs which leads to diseases is repaired by external cells, tissues or organs. The company specializes in the development of human stem cell-based medical solutions for the treatment of diabetes and neurodegenerative diseases, such as ALS and Multiple Sclerosis. The company was founded in August 2009 by Professor Michel Revel and Yossi Ben Yossef, and is traded on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE: KDST). Kadimastem employs 35 people, of which 12 are PhDs, and its 1,700m2 offices and labs are located in the Ness Ziona Science Park.
Kadimastem was founded based on patent protected technology that was developed at the Weizmann Institute of Science, in Prof. Michel Revel’s laboratory. Prof. Revel, who serves as the company's Chief Scientist and director, developed Merck KGaA's blockbuster drug, Rebif® for the treatment of MS (sales of around $2.4 billion sales in 2014).
Based on the company's unique platform, Kadimastem is developing two types of medical applications: A. Regenerative medicine, which repairs and replaces organs and tissue by using functioning cells differentiated from stem cells. The company focuses on transplanting healthy brain cells to support the survivability of nerve cells as cell therapy for ALS, and transplanting insulin-secreting pancreatic cells for the treatment of insulin-dependent diabetes; B. Drug screening platforms, which use functional human cells and tissues to discover new medicinal drugs. The company has two collaboration agreements with leading global pharmaceutical companies.
The company is headed by Yossi Ben-Yossef, an entrepreneur with extensive experience in life sciences companies. The company's chairman is Dr. Eli Opper, formerly the Chief Scientist of the Israeli Ministry of Industry, Labor and Trade. The company's investors, in addition to the founders, include Altshuler Shaham Investment House, foreign investors (Julien Ruggieri and Avi Meizler), and additional institutional investors.
Kadimastem has an extensive scientific advisory board, featuring prominent scientists and pioneers: in the embryonic stem cells field, Professor Benjamin Reubinoff, Director of the Hadassah Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research Center and Senior Physician at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Hadassah University Medical Center and Professor Joseph Itskovich, world renowned expert and pioneer in pluripotent stem cell research and former head of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Rambam Medical Center; in the neurodegenerative disease field, Professor Tamir Ben-Hur, Head of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Hadassah University Medical Center; and in the diabetes field, Professor Shimon Efrat, professor of Human Molecular Genetics and Juvenile Diabetes at Tel Aviv University and a world renowned expert in cell replacement therapy for diabetes and Professor Eddy Karnieli, past Director of the Institute for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at the Rambam Medical Center, and a world renowned expert in these fields.
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