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Critical molecular pathways in CSCs of CML

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Critical molecular pathways in CSCs of CML

Critical molecular pathways in cancer stem cells of chronic myeloid leukemia by Y Chen, C Peng, C Sullivan, D Li and S Li, Leukemia 2010(Sep); 24(9): 1545-54. Epub 2010 Jun 24. [Connotea bookmark][PubMed citation][Full text]. The abstract of this OA review:

Inhibition of BCR-ABL with kinase inhibitors in the treatment of Philadelphia-positive (Ph(+)) chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is highly effective in controlling but not curing the disease. This is largely due to the inability of these kinase inhibitors to kill leukemia stem cells (LSCs) responsible for disease relapse. This stem cell resistance is not associated with the BCR-ABL kinase domain mutations resistant to kinase inhibitors. Development of curative therapies for CML requires the identification of crucial molecular pathways responsible for the survival and self-renewal of LSCs. In this review, we will discuss our current understanding of these crucial molecular pathways in LSCs and the available therapeutic strategies for targeting these stem cells in CML.

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Must the last CML cell be killed?

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Must the last CML cell be killed?

Do we have to kill the last CML cell? DM Ross, TP Hughes and JV Melo, Leukemia 2010(Sep 16) [Epub ahead of print][FriendFeed entry][PubMed citation][Full text]. The abstract of this OA review:

Previous experience in the treatment of chronic myeloid leukaemic (CML) has shown that the achievement of clinical, morphological and cytogenetic remission does not indicate eradication of the disease. A complete molecular response (CMR; no detectable BCR-ABL mRNA) represents a deeper level of response, but even CMR is not a guarantee of elimination of the leukaemic, because the significance of CMR is determined by the detection limit of the assay that is used. Two studies of imatinib cessation in CMR are underway, cumulatively involving over 100 patients. The current estimated rate of stable CMR after stopping imatinib is approximately 40%, but the duration of follow-up is relatively short. The factors that determine relapse risk are yet to be identified. The intrinsic capacity of any residual leukaemic cells to proliferate following the withdrawal of treatment may be important, but there may also be a role for immunological suppression of the leukaemic clone. No currently available test can formally prove that the leukaemic clone is eradicated. Here we discuss the sensitive measurement of minimal residual disease, and speculate on the biology of BCR-ABL-positive cells that may persist after effective therapy of CML.

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On the low frequency of tumor-initiating cells

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on On the low frequency of tumor-initiating cells

Tumor-Initiating Cells Are Rare in Many Human Tumors by Kota Ishizawa and 16 co-authors, including Benjamin G Neel and William Matsui, Cell Stem Cell 2010(Sep 3); 7(3): 279-282. [FriendFeed entry][PubMed citation]. Abstract:

Tumor-initiating cells (TICs) are defined by their ability to form tumors after xenotransplantation in immunodeficient mice and appear to be relatively rare in most human cancers. Recent data in melanoma indicate that the frequency of TICs increases dramatically via more permissive xenotransplantation conditions, raising the possibility that the true frequency of TICs has been greatly underestimated in most human tumors. We compared the growth of human pancreatic, non-small cell lung, and head and neck carcinomas in NOD/SCID and NSG mice. Although TIC frequency was detected up to 10-fold higher in NSG mice, it remained low (<1 in 2500 cells) in all cases. Moreover, aldehyde dehydrogenase-positive (ALDH(+)) and CD44(+)CD24(+) cells, phenotypically distinct cells enriched in TICs, were equally tumorigenic in NOD/SCID and NSG mice. Our findings demonstrate that TICs are rare in these cancers and that the identification of TICs and their frequency in other human malignancies should be validated via primary tumors and highly permissive xenotransplantation conditions.

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Some breast cancer tumors may not originate from stem cells?

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Some breast cancer tumors may not originate from stem cells?

Surprise breast cancer source by Jennifer Welsh,TheScientist.com, September 2, 2010. First paragraph:

Some breast cancer tumors may not originate from stem cells as previously believed, according to a study published in the September 3rd issue of Cell Stem Cell. The discovery is an important step in the development of treatments for these cancers.

This news story is based on the publication: BRCA1 Basal-like Breast Cancers Originate from Luminal Epithelial Progenitors and Not from Basal Stem Cells by Gemma Molyneux and 11 co-authors, including Matthew J Smalley, Cell Stem Cell 2010(Sep 3); 7(3): 403-417. OA article [Full text] [PubMed citation].

A commentary: Cancer Cell of Origin: Spotlight on Luminal Progenitors by Christine L Chaffer and Robert A Weinberg, Cell Stem Cell 2010(Sep 3); 7(3): 271-272. [PubMed citation].

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Isolation and killing of candidate CML stem cells by antibody targeting

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Isolation and killing of candidate CML stem cells by antibody targeting

Isolation and killing of candidate chronic myeloid leukemia stem cells by antibody targeting of IL-1 receptor accessory protein by Marcus Järås and 10 co-authors, including Thoas Fioretos, Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2010(Aug 30). OA article. [Epub ahead of print][PubMed citation]. Abstract:

Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is genetically characterized by the Philadelphia (Ph) chromosome, formed through a reciprocal translocation between chromosomes 9 and 22 and giving rise to the constitutively active tyrosine kinase P210 BCR/ABL1. Therapeutic strategies aiming for a cure of CML will require full eradication of Ph chromosome-positive (Ph(+)) CML stem cells. Here we used gene-expression profiling to identify IL-1 receptor accessory protein (IL1RAP) as up-regulated in CML CD34(+) cells and also in cord blood CD34(+) cells as a consequence of retroviral BCR/ABL1 expression. To test whether IL1RAP expression distinguishes normal (Ph(-)) and leukemic (Ph(+)) cells within the CML CD34(+)CD38(-) cell compartment, we established a unique protocol for conducting FISH on small numbers of sorted cells. By using this method, we sorted cells directly into drops on slides to investigate their Ph-chromosome status. Interestingly, we found that the CML CD34(+)CD38(-)IL1RAP(+) cells were Ph(+), whereas CML CD34(+)CD38(-)IL1RAP(-) cells were almost exclusively Ph(-). By performing long-term culture-initiating cell assays on the two cell populations, we found that Ph(+) and Ph(-) candidate CML stem cells could be prospectively separated. In addition, by generating an anti-IL1RAP antibody, we provide proof of concept that IL1RAP can be used as a target on CML CD34(+)CD38(-) cells to induce antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity. This study thus identifies IL1RAP as a unique cell surface biomarker distinguishing Ph(+) from Ph(-) candidate CML stem cells and opens up a previously unexplored avenue for therapy of CML.

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Two Open Access reviews

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Two Open Access reviews

1) Cancer Stem Cells in Pancreatic Cancer by Qi Bao and 6 co-authors, including Karl-Walter Jauch and Christiane J Bruns, Cancers 2010(Aug 19); 2(3): 1629-41. [Full text PDF][Scribd entry][Part of the Special Issue Pancreatic Cancer]. Abstract:

Pancreatic cancer is an aggressive malignant solid tumor well-known by early metastasis, local invasion, resistance to standard chemo- and radiotherapy and poor prognosis. Increasing evidence indicates that pancreatic cancer is initiated and propagated by cancer stem cells (CSCs). Here we review the current research results regarding CSCs in pancreatic cancer and discuss the different markers identifying pancreatic CSCs. This review will focus on metastasis, microRNA regulation and anti-CSC therapy in pancreatic cancer.

2) The Emerging Role of the Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinase/ Akt/Mammalian Target of Rapamycin Signaling Network in Cancer Stem Cell Biology by Alberto M Martelli and 4 co-authors, including James A McCubrey, Cancers 2010(Aug 18); 2(3): 1576-96. [Part of the Special Issue Cancer Stem Cells].

Comment: Review #2 is the first paper that has been published in the special issue on Cancer Stem Cells. As of August 20, 17 more contributions to this special issue are planned. Review #1, although about CSCs, is a contribution to a separate special issue on Pancreatic Cancer.

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Selective targeting of neuroblastoma tumour-initiating cells

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Selective targeting of neuroblastoma tumour-initiating cells

Selective targeting of neuroblastoma tumour-initiating cells by compounds identified in stem cell-based small molecule screens by Kristen M Smith and 16 co-authors, including David R Kaplan, EMBO Mol Med 2010(Aug 18) [Epub ahead of print][Full text]. Abstract:

Neuroblastoma (NB) is the most deadly extra-cranial solid tumour in children necessitating an urgent need for effective and less toxic treatments. One reason for the lack of efficacious treatments may be the inability of existing drugs to target the tumour-initiating or cancer stem cell population responsible for sustaining tumour growth, metastases and relapse. Here, we describe a strategy to identify compounds that selectively target patient-derived cancer stem cell-like tumour-initiating cells (TICs) while sparing normal paediatric stem cells (skin-derived precursors, SKPs) and characterize two therapeutic candidates. DECA-14 and rapamycin were identified as NB TIC-selective agents. Both compounds induced TIC death at nanomolar concentrations in vitro, significantly reduced NB xenograft tumour weight in vivo, and dramatically decreased self-renewal or tumour-initiation capacity in treated tumours. These results demonstrate that differential drug sensitivities between TICs and normal paediatric stem cells can be exploited to identify novel, patient-specific and potentially less toxic therapies.

See also: New Twist on Drug Screening to Treat Common Childhood Cancer, ScienceDaily, August 18, 2010. Excerpt:

A study led by scientists at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) reveals a new method of identifying drugs to treat children suffering from fatal cancers for which an effective treatment has not been found. Rather than developing a new drug from scratch, which is a complicated and time-consuming process, they tried a different approach: in the lab, they tested existing drugs on cancer stem cells from young patients with neuroblastoma, one of the common cancers of infants and children.

A related blog post is: High-throughput cancer stem cell-based screening assay for therapeutic compounds by Alexey Bersenev, Stem Cell Assays, August 19, 2010 [FriendFeed entry].

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Therapeutic implications of colon CSCs

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Therapeutic implications of colon CSCs

Therapeutic implications of colon cancer stem cells by Eros Fabrizi and 3 co-authors, including Lucia Ricci-Vitiani, World J Gastroenterol 2010(Aug 21); 16(31): 3871-7. OA review. [FriendFeed entry][PubMed citation]. Abstract:

Colorectal cancer is the second most common cause of cancer-related death in many industrialized countries and is characterized by a heterogenic pool of cells with distinct differentiation patterns. Recently, the concept that cancer might arise from a rare population of cells with stem cell-like properties has received support with regard to several solid tumors, including colorectal cancer. According to the cancer stem cell hypothesis, cancer can be considered a disease in which mutations either convert normal stem cells into aberrant counterparts or cause a more differentiated cell to revert toward a stem cell-like behaviour; either way these cells are thought to be responsible for tumor generation and propagation. The statement that only a subset of cells drives tumor formation has major implications for the development of new targeted therapeutic strategies aimed at eradicating the tumor stem cell population. This review will focus on the biology of normal and malignant colonic stem cells, which might contribute to our understanding of the mechanisms responsible for tumor development and resistance to therapy.

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Putative tumor-initiating progenitor cells predict poor lung cancer prognosis

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Putative tumor-initiating progenitor cells predict poor lung cancer prognosis

Adult lung stem cells, vital to injury repair, associated with poor cancer prognosis, News release, UCLA Newsroom, August 17, 2010. Excerpts:

Adult stem cells that are vital for airway repair in the lung but that persist in areas where pre-cancerous lesions are found are associated with a poor prognosis in patients who develop cancer, even those with early-stage disease, researchers at UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center have found.

…..

In this study, Gomperts and her team screened around 900 tumors removed from patients with non-small cell lung cancer at UCLA and the University of Texas’ MD Anderson Cancer Center, looking to see whether the adult stem cells could be found in the tumor. In her lab, Gomperts is now studying the pre-cancerous lesions where the adult stem cells persist in an attempt to uncover the cascade of molecular events that may transform these cells into lung cancer stem cells.

The news release is based on this publication: Presence of a Putative Tumor-Initiating Progenitor Cell Population Predicts Poor Prognosis in Smokers with Non–Small Cell Lung Cancer by Aik T Ooi and 19 co-authors, including Brigitte N Gomperts, Cancer Res 2010(Aug 15); 70(16): 6639-48. [PubMed citation][Full text]. Abstract:

Smoking is the most important known risk factor for the development of lung cancer. Tobacco exposure results in chronic inflammation, tissue injury, and repair. A recent hypothesis argues for a stem/progenitor cell involved in airway epithelial repair that may be a tumor-initiating cell in lung cancer and which may be associated with recurrence and metastasis. We used immunostaining, quantitative real-time PCR, Western blots, and lung cancer tissue microarrays to identify subpopulations of airway epithelial stem/progenitor cells under steady-state conditions, normal repair, aberrant repair with premalignant lesions and lung cancer, and their correlation with injury and prognosis. We identified a population of keratin 14 (K14)-expressing progenitor epithelial cells that was involved in repair after injury. Dysregulated repair resulted in the persistence of K14+ cells in the airway epithelium in potentially premalignant lesions. The presence of K14+ progenitor airway epithelial cells in NSCLC predicted a poor prognosis, and this predictive value was strongest in smokers, in which it also correlated with metastasis. This suggests that reparative K14+ progenitor cells may be tumor-initiating cells in this subgroup of smokers with NSCLC.

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ISCO to Present Data on Progress of Human Parthenogenetic Stem Cell Differentiation into Functional Liver Cells at the Annual Meeting…

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on ISCO to Present Data on Progress of Human Parthenogenetic Stem Cell Differentiation into Functional Liver Cells at the Annual Meeting…

ISCO to Present Data on Progress of Human Parthenogenetic Stem Cell Differentiation into Functional Liver Cells at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases

International Stem Cell Corporation (OTCBB:ISCO), http://www.internationalstemcell.com, will present data on its progress toward producing human liver cells from immune-matched patient-specific parthenogenetic stem cells at The Liver Meeting®, the 61st Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (ASSLD), in Boston, MA from October 29 – November 2, 2010.

ISCO will present to a number of the world’s leading liver specialists, a new method of obtaining highly enriched cultures of differentiated cells from pluripotent human stem cells, based on a natural physiological process. A follow-on presentation will demonstrate that differentiation protocols previously developed for human embryonic stem cells can, with some modification, be effectively applied to human parthenogenetic stem cells. These findings will be presented as part of the ‘Stem Cell Poster Session‘ on November 1, 2010, and are entitled, ‘Hepatocyte-like cells derived from patient-specific human parthenogenetic stem cells possess functions of mature human hepatocytes including P450 activity” and, “Derivation of highly enriched populations of hepatocytes from various types of human pluripotent stem cells using a novel physiological method.”

Commenting on these presentations, ISCO’s CEO, Andrey Semechkin, PhD, said: “We are pleased our research team is able to present and discuss these important findings at this highly prestigious meeting of The American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, one of the leading organizations in the U.S. specializing in the health of the liver and attended by more than 7,500 physicians and scientists.”

ISCO’s Director of Research and Therapeutic Development, Nikolay Turovets, PhD, stated, “Presenting these new discoveries at this meeting demonstrates the progress we have made towards producing hepatic cells using our parthenotes, and form part of our ongoing efforts to develop and publicize the unique benefits of our human parthenogenetic stem cell platform to the scientific community. Over the past year, our research group has also presented data to the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR), the 8th Annual Meeting and the Human SCNT Workshop conducted by the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) and the Medical Research Council (MRC)”.

In addition, ISCO announced today the signing of an agreement with Explora BioLabs, a leading California-based CRO specializing in conducting high-quality pre-clinical in vivo studies. Based on the results presented at this conference, ISCO will be initiating a series of pre-clinical animal experiments to study the engraftment and in vivo maturation of these cells.

ISCO’s Vice President, Simon Craw, PhD, said: “Demonstrating that our human parthenogenetic stem cells can truly differentiate into mature cells, as well as the initiation of these animal studies represents important achievements towards demonstrating the validity of creating a bank of immune-matched human pluripotent stem cells and their therapeutic derivatives that can be used in clinical studies and, ultimately, be a valuable health resource for the growing field of regenerative medicine.”

ABOUT INTERNATIONAL STEM CELL CORPORATION (ISCO.OB)

International Stem Cell Corporation is a California-based biotechnology company focused on therapeutic and research products. ISCO’s core technology, parthenogenesis, results in creation of pluripotent human stem cells from unfertilized oocytes (eggs). These proprietary cells avoid ethical issues associated with use or destruction of viable human embryos and, unlike most other major stem cell types, can be immune matched and be a source of therapeutic cells with minimal rejection after transplantation into hundreds of millions of individuals of differing racial groups. ISCO also produces and markets specialized cells and growth media for therapeutic research worldwide through its subsidiary, Lifeline Cell Technology, and is developing a line of cosmeceutical products via its subsidiary, Lifeline Skin Care. ISCO is advancing novel human stem cell-based therapies where cells have been proven to be efficacious but traditional small molecule and protein therapeutics have not. More information is available on ISCO’s website, http://www.internationalstemcell.com.

To subscribe to receive ongoing corporate communications please click on the following link: http://www.b2i.us/irpass.asp?BzID=1468&to=ea&s=0.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Statements pertaining to anticipated developments and therapeutic applications, the potential benefits of collaborations, affiliations, and other opportunities for the company and its subsidiaries, along with other statements about the future expectations, beliefs, goals, plans, or prospects expressed by management constitute forward-looking statements. Any statements that are not historical fact (including, but not limited to statements that contain words such as “will,” “believes,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “estimates,”) should also be considered to be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in the development and/or commercialization of potential products and the management of collaborations, uncertainty in the results of clinical trials or regulatory approvals, need and ability to obtain future capital, application of capital resources among competing uses, and maintenance of intellectual property rights. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements and as such should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect the company’s business, particularly those mentioned in the cautionary statements found in the company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company disclaims any intent or obligation to update forward-looking statements.

Key Words: Stem cells, parthenogenesis, biotechnology

International Stem Cell Corporation
Ken Aldrich, Chairman
1-760-940-6383
kaldrich@intlstemcell.com
or
Nikolay Turovets, PhD
nturovets@intlstemcell.com

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International Stem Cell Corporation and Insight Bioventures India Structure Indian Affiliate to Develop Stem Cell-Based Eye Care Therapeutics…

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on International Stem Cell Corporation and Insight Bioventures India Structure Indian Affiliate to Develop Stem Cell-Based Eye Care Therapeutics…

International Stem Cell Corporation and Insight Bioventures India Structure Indian Affiliate to Develop Stem Cell-Based Eye Care Therapeutics for India and Produce Research Products for Asia

International Stem Cell Corporation (OTCBB: ISCO), http://www.internationalstemcell.com, and Insight Bioventures India Private Limited (IBVI), (http://www.insightbioventures.in) today announced that they have agreed on financial and structural terms for establishment of an Indian affiliate of ISCO (ISCO India). This is an important milestone in ISCO and IBVI’s goal to facilitate development and commercialization of ISCO’s stem-cell derived corneal tissue, CytoCor™, and retinal cells, CytoRet™, for treatment of blindness and severe vision impairment as well as cell systems for drug screening in India and establish a manufacturing base for ISCO’s Lifeline Cell Technology® (Lifeline) brand of cell culture media for commercialization throughout Asia.

IBVI is an experienced biomedical business developer that facilitated the earliest cell therapy guidelines with the regulatory agencies in India and is well connected with Indian research and clinical centers, corporations and government. IBVI has now partnered with MARG Group (http://www.marggroup.com), one of India’s fastest-growing infrastructure developers with interest in ports, airports, power plants, commercial spaces, special export zones and other integrated infrastructures, to form ‘Insight-MARG Biofund’ (Biofund). The MARG Group is the lead facilitator of Biofund, the largest of its nature in India so far and with great possibility for being complemented by Indian government grants.

ISCO is a public US biopharmaceutical company that has pioneered the creation of a new class of stem cells, ‘human parthenogenetic stem cells’, with broad therapeutic application potential and ability to form non-rejected, immune matched therapeutic cells for millions of people. Two ISCO therapeutic programs from this platform are CytoCor and CytoRet that offer first-in-class opportunities to treat diseases in the front and the back of the eye where surgery and traditional small molecule and protein therapeutics are not options. ISCO also markets and sells cell culture research products through its Lifeline affiliate and international distributors, including in Asia. Lifeline is interested in leveraging its expertise to develop live human cell systems for drug screening in India.

G.R.K. Reddy, MARG Group’s founder and chairman, says, ‘MARG Group and IBVI have formed Biofund to leverage our resources and network of cutting-edge research and clinical institutes, corporate entities and government agencies in India. We believe ISCO India’s unique combination of novel therapeutics to address large unmet medical needs and current and near-term research product businesses will be a first successful Biofund investment and set the stage for subsequent ventures.’

The agreed financial and structural terms will enable formation of ISCO India as a majority-owned Indian affiliate of ISCO, initially with laboratories in India’s first clinical research facility (CRF) for stem cells and regenerative medicine in Hyderabad with the intent to relocate to India’s first platinum-rated research center, MARG Science Park (http://www.margsciencepark.com), in Chennai. The park is a member of International Association of Sciences Parks (IASP) and has established networking and alliances with renowned institutes and organizations. The affiliate will be managed jointly by a team of experienced managers in India and ISCO executives.

ISCO expects that manufacturing of Lifeline media products and shipping of cell products from this central Indian base will be established to supply the growing network of Lifeline’s Asian distributors with high-quality products in a cost-efficient fashion. In parallel, ISCO India intends to explore development of Lifeline cell systems for drug screening in India. On the therapeutic side, ISCO India will leverage the access to leading eye care researchers, patients and regulatory agencies in India and advance the CytoCor and CytoRet cellular ophthalmology programs towards the clinic and through safety-efficacy trials.

Central to the operation will be continued collaboration with the ophthalmology scientists and clinicians at Sankara Nethralaya (http://www.sankaranethralaya.org) in Chennai established last spring. ISCO India will also collaborate with the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB, http://www.ccmb.res.in) in Hyderabad that was instrumental in the establishment of the CRF and will be a joint CRF tenant with ISCO India. Both institutions are respected worldwide for their research in cellular science and therapy.

According to Dr. Jayaraman Packirisamy, Executive Director of IBVI, ‘As we launch Biofund, ISCO India will provide an opportunity to address large unmet medical needs while establishing an ecosystem for the well-educated work force, world-class research and development facilities and investors in India. By combining manufacturing of existing and development of new research products with well-defined therapeutic development, we create an attractive risk-reward profile that is rarely seen in our industry.’

Brian Lundstrom, ISCO’s President, adds ‘ISCO wishes to collaborate with leading research and clinical groups like CCMB and Sankara Nethralaya for our cellular ophthalmology programs. Moreover, we have to manufacture our Lifeline media in Asia and ship those with our primary human cells from an Asian location in order to supply that fast-growing market with the highest possible quality products in a cost-efficient manner. The combination of well-proven Indian research and clinical institutes, world-class facilities, and funding from the Insight-MARG Biofund provides ISCO with a unique way to advance our programs and businesses without additional US capital investment or issuance of equity shares.’

ABOUT INSIGHT BIOVENTURES INDIA

Insight Bioventures Private Limited (IBVI) is the Asian member of Insight Bioventures founded in 1997 to apply a multidimensional approach to value creation in the international life sciences community while placing client’s interests first. IBVI operates through a team of experienced associates and partners from the pharmaceutical industry, academic research and the financial sector. The company maintains long-standing relationships with opinion leaders in different therapeutic areas that assist in evaluation and advancement of innovative product concepts and medical businesses. IBVI has made tissue engineering and cell therapy a major technology focus and works with recognized leaders in these areas, e.g. Sristi Biosciences and International Stem Cell Corporation. IBVI has partnered with strong Indian corporations and high net worth individuals to establish a dedicated ‘Biofund’ to finance the best novel technologies for Indian development and with potential to address large unmet medical needs in the Asian market. More information is available on IBVI’s website: http://www.insightbioventures.in.

ABOUT INTERNATIONAL STEM CELL CORPORATION (ISCO.OB)

International Stem Cell Corporation is a California-based biotechnology company focused on therapeutic and research products. ISCO’s core technology, parthenogenesis, results in creation of pluripotent human stem cells from unfertilized oocytes (eggs). These proprietary cells avoid ethical issues associated with use or destruction of viable human embryos and, unlike most other major stem cell types, can be immune matched and be a source of therapeutic cells with minimal rejection after transplantation into hundreds of millions of individuals of differing racial groups. ISCO also produces and markets specialized cells and growth media for therapeutic research worldwide through its subsidiary, Lifeline Cell Technology, and is developing a line of cosmeceutical products via its subsidiary, Lifeline Skin Care. ISCO is advancing novel human stem cell-based therapies where cells have been proven to be efficacious but traditional small molecule and protein therapeutics have not. More information is available on ISCO’s website.

To subscribe to receive ongoing corporate communications please click on the following link: http://www.b2i.us/irpass.asp?BzID=1468&to=ea&s=0.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Statements pertaining to anticipated developments and therapeutic applications, the potential benefits of collaborations, affiliations, and other opportunities for the company and its subsidiaries, along with other statements about the future expectations, beliefs, goals, plans, or prospects expressed by management constitute forward-looking statements. Any statements that are not historical fact (including, but not limited to statements that contain words such as “will,” “believes,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “estimates,”) should also be considered to be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in the development and/or commercialization of potential products and the management of collaborations, uncertainty in the results of clinical trials or regulatory approvals, need and ability to obtain future capital, application of capital resources among competing uses, and maintenance of intellectual property rights. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements and as such should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect the company’s business, particularly those mentioned in the cautionary statements found in the company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company disclaims any intent or obligation to update forward-looking statements.

Key Words: Stem cells, parthenogenesis, cornea, retina, research products, biotechnology, India

International Stem Cell Corporation
Brian Lundstrom, President
+1-510-220-5599
bl@intlstemcell.com
or
Insight Bioventures India Private Limited
Dr. Jayaraman Packirisamy, Executive Director
+91-98489-12260
jayaram@insightbioventures.in

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International Stem Cell Corporation Reports Significant Progress Towards Creation of the First Bank of Immune-Matched Human Parthenogenetic Stem Cells

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on International Stem Cell Corporation Reports Significant Progress Towards Creation of the First Bank of Immune-Matched Human Parthenogenetic Stem Cells

International Stem Cell Corporation (OTCBB:ISCO), http://www.internationalstemcell.com, announced today that its oocyte collection and activation protocol has received the approval of an Institutional Review Board (IRB). IRB review and approval is a Federal requirement for all studies enrolling human subjects, and ensures appropriate subject safety and monitoring to protect subjects from unnecessary medical risks. ‘Obtaining IRB approval for our oocyte collection and activation protocol is a major step forward towards the goal of building a viable bank of human parthenogenetic stem cells,’ said Dr. Simon Craw, Vice President of ISCO.

ISCO’s breakthrough discoveries have resulted in unique stem cells carrying distinct advantages over other human pluripotent stem cells. ISCO uses unfertilized eggs (oocytes) to create human ‘parthenogenetic’ stem cells (hpSCs). Like human embryonic stem cells (hESCs), hpSCs are pluripotent, i.e. they have the capacity to become almost any cell type in the body, yet avoid ethical issues associated with use or destruction of viable human embryos. Unlike hESCs, hpSCs can be created in a form such that they can be immunologically matched to millions of individuals. This makes possible, for the first time, the establishment of a bank containing a manageable number of stem cell lines immune matched to a large patient population.

ISCO also announced that Prof. M. Kalichman of the University of California San Diego and Director of the San Diego Research Ethics Consortium has been engaged to provide help in creating an effective system for the ethical review of ISCO’s donor recruitment processes including facilitating Stem Cell Research Oversight (SCRO) committee review and approval. SCRO committee review involves the analysis and approval of the scientific rationale, including any ethical considerations associated with stem cell research. The SCRO committee membership is mandated to include an ethicist, an assisted reproductive technology expert, appropriate scientific expertise, a patient advocate and a non-scientific member of the public.

Prof. Kalichman said, ‘I look forward to working with International Stem Cell Corporation to help with both identifying and recommending solutions to the challenges of conducting ethically responsible research with human stem cells.’

These achievements mark major milestones along ISCO’s strategic path of leveraging its discoveries and intellectual property to create a bank of immune matched pluripotent human stem cells and their therapeutic derivatives that can be used for clinical research and ultimately as a valuable medical resource to the growing field of regenerative medicine.

ABOUT INTERNATIONAL STEM CELL CORPORATION (ISCO.OB)

International Stem Cell Corporation is a California-based biotechnology company focused on therapeutic and research products. ISCO’s core technology, parthenogenesis, results in creation of pluripotent human stem cells from unfertilized oocytes (eggs). These proprietary cells avoid ethical issues associated with use or destruction of viable human embryos and, unlike most other major stem cell types, can be immune matched and be a source of therapeutic cells with minimal rejection after transplantation into hundreds of millions of individuals of differing racial groups. ISCO also produces and markets specialized cells and growth media for therapeutic research worldwide through its subsidiary, Lifeline Cell Technology, and is developing a line of cosmeceutical products via its subsidiary, Lifeline Skin Care. ISCO is advancing novel human stem cell-based therapies where cells have been proven to be efficacious but traditional small molecule and protein therapeutics have not. More information is available at ISCO’s website, http://www.internationalstemcell.com.

To subscribe to receive ongoing corporate communications please click on the following link: http://www.b2i.us/irpass.asp?BzID=1468&to=ea&s=0.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Statements pertaining to anticipated technological developments and therapeutic applications, the potential benefits of collaborations, affiliations, and other opportunities for the company and its subsidiaries, along with other statements about the future expectations, beliefs, goals, plans, or prospects expressed by management constitute forward-looking statements. Any statements that are not historical fact (including, but not limited to statements that contain words such as “will,” “should,” “believes,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “estimates,”) should also be considered to be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in the development and/or commercialization of potential products, uncertainty in the results of clinical trials or regulatory approvals, need and ability to obtain future capital, application of capital resources among competing uses, and maintenance of intellectual property rights. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements and as such should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect the company’s business, particularly those mentioned in the cautionary statements found in the company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

Key Words: Stem Cells, Biotechnology, Parthenogenesis

International Stem Cell Corporation
Kenneth C. Aldrich, Chairman
760-940-6383
kaldrich@intlstemcell.com
or
Simon Craw, PhD, Vice President
760-940-6383
sc@intlstemcell.com

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Kenneth Aldrich, Chairman and Co-Founder of International Stem Cell Corporation will be making two public appearances this week on behalf of ISCO.

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Kenneth Aldrich, Chairman and Co-Founder of International Stem Cell Corporation will be making two public appearances this week on behalf of ISCO.

On Monday, September 13, 2010, Mr. Aldrich will be speaking as part of a panel at the Stem Cells USA & Regenerative Medicine Congress in Philadelphia, discussing the topic, “Autologous vs. Allogeneic Business Models”.
On Wednesday, September 15, 2010 at 9:35AM EDT, Mr. Aldrich will present at the Rodman and Renshaw Annual Global Investment Conference in New York. The webcast can be viewed live at: http://www.wsw.com/webcast/rrshq18/isco.ob. The presentation will be archived and viewable at the same link for 90 days. After the Rodman and Renshaw Conference, a link to the presentation will also be posted to the ISCO website, http://www.internationalstemcell.com.
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A Primer on the Use of Stem Cells in Ophthalmology by Irving J. Arons

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on A Primer on the Use of Stem Cells in Ophthalmology by Irving J. Arons

An extremely comprehensive article about stem cell programs in opthalmology by Irving J. Arons

A Primer on the Use of Stem Cells in Ophthalmology
by Irving J. Arons

I recently came across an interesting news release from International Stem Cell Corporation (ISCO) announcing that it had formed a new business unit, Cytovis, to focus on stem cell programs in ophthalmology, including CytoCor for the cornea and CytoRet for the retina.

That got me thinking about how little I knew about what was going on in stem cell research in ophthalmology, despite having written about two developments in the field, the London Project to Cure Blindness and the University of California Irvine (UCI) program to develop an artificial retina based on stem cell research.

I decided to become better informed by taking a closer look at what was happening in this field, and presenting that story.

Introduction
Commenting on a EuroRetina Meeting held earlier in 2008, John Morrow of Newport Biotech Consultants noted, as reported by Ophthalmology Times Europe in September 2008, “Stem Cells are looked upon as either an ethical train wreck or the gateway to the alleviation of human illness, depending on which side of the political spectrum one resides. This unfortunate notoriety has resulted in unprecedented coverage in the media, but this has not done much to advance the cause of this technology. Yet recent ophthalmologic research suggests that the medical applications of stem cells hold notable promise for the treatment of ocular degenerative conditions and that realization of this potential may come about in the near future.”

I think Dr. Morrow’s thoughts eloquently sum up the subject. Stem cell research is politically charged but holds tremendous promise for the future, especially in ophthalmology.

What are Stem Cells?
Every organ and tissue in our bodies is made up of specialized cells that originally come from a pool of stem cells in the very early embryo (“embryonic stem cells”). Throughout our lives we rely to a much more limited degree on rare deposits of stem cells in certain areas of the body (“adult stem cells”) to regenerate organs and tissues that are injured or lost, such as our skin, our hair, our blood and the lining of our gut.

Stem cells are like a blank microchip that can be programmed to perform particular tasks. Under proper conditions, stem cells develop or “differentiate” into specialized cells that carry out a specific function, such as in the skin, muscle, liver, or in the eye. Additionally, stem cells can grow extensively without differentiating and give rise to more stem cells…

To read the full article, please visit – http://irvaronsjournal.blogspot.com/2010/09/primer-on-use-of-stem-cells-in.html

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International Stem Cell Corporation Not Adversely Affected by Stem Cell Research Funding Ban

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on International Stem Cell Corporation Not Adversely Affected by Stem Cell Research Funding Ban

OCEANSIDE, CA – August 26, 2010 – International Stem Cell Corporation (OTCBB:ISCO), http://www.internationalstemcell.com, announced today that the recent action of a federal district judge blocking federal funding of embryonic stem cell research is not expected to have negative effects on ISCO’s therapeutic programs using its human parthenogenetic stem cells.

According to ISCO’s Chairman Ken Aldrich, “Because we have never depended on federal or state money to fund our research, the new ruling is simply not applicable to any of our programs in the US or any of our international efforts. Although we believe anything that restricts legitimate scientific research is detrimental to science and our Country and hope the ruling is quickly reversed, the ruling could in a strange way benefit ISCO by creating additional incentives for researchers to use our parthenogenetic stem cell lines.”

Because ISCO’s technology, parthenogenesis, does not destroy or damage a viable human embryo, its parthenogenetic stem cell lines (“hpSC”) offer an alternative way to continue research previously done with embryonic cell lines without raising ethical issues about the destruction of life. Published peer-reviewed papers have shown hpSC to be “pluripotent”, a characteristic shared with embryonic stem cells that allows them to become tissues leading to all the cells found in the human body. Therefore, ISCO’s hpSC lines offer an alternative to the ethical issues that continue to be problematic for embryonic stem cells.

When enacted, legislation prohibiting the creation of a human embryo for research purposes prohibited both successful methods, such as fertilization, as well as less understood methods such as parthenogenesis. Parthenogenetic methods since developed by ISCO do not create human embryos that could become viable human beings, yet can result in pluripotent hpSC lines with potential therapeutic value. “The recent court ruling may cause Congress to revisit its legislation. If so, then ISCO’s research showing its hpSC lines present an alternative to embryonic stem cells, without raising the ethical concerns about the creation or destruction of viable human life, may lead to Congress allowing federal funding of hpSC in future legislation. ISCO would then be free to provide hpSC lines to federally-funded researchers and move more of our work back into the US from foreign jurisdictions”, said Jeffrey Janus, Senior Vice President of ISCO and one of its founders.

ABOUT INTERNATIONAL STEM CELL CORPORATION (ISCO.OB)
International Stem Cell Corporation is a California-based biotechnology company focused on therapeutic and research products. ISCO’s core technology, parthenogenesis, results in creation of pluripotent human stem cells from unfertilized oocytes (eggs). These proprietary cells avoid ethical issues associated with use or destruction of viable human embryos and, unlike all other major stem cell types, can be immune matched and be a source of therapeutic cells with minimal rejection after transplantation into hundreds of millions of individuals across racial groups. ISCO also produces and markets specialized cells and growth media for therapeutic research worldwide through its subsidiary Lifeline Cell Technology, develops a line of cosmeceutical products via its subsidiary Lifeline Skin Care and advances novel human stem cell-based therapies where cells have been proven to be efficacious but traditional small molecule and protein therapeutics do not. More information is available at ISCO’s website, http://www.internationalstemcell.com.

To subscribe to receive ongoing corporate communications please click on the following link: http://www.b2i.us/irpass.asp?BzID=1468&to=ea&s=0

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
Statements pertaining to anticipated technological developments and therapeutic applications, the potential benefits of collaborations, affiliations, and other opportunities for the company and its subsidiaries, along with other statements about the future expectations, beliefs, goals, plans, or prospects expressed by management constitute forward-looking statements. Any statements that are not historical fact (including, but not limited to statements that contain words such as “will,” “should,” “believes,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “estimates,”) should also be considered to be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in the development and/or commercialization of potential products, uncertainty in the results of clinical trials or regulatory approvals, need and ability to obtain future capital, application of capital resources among competing uses, and maintenance of intellectual property rights. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements and as such should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect the company’s business, particularly those mentioned in the cautionary statements found in the company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

Key Words: Stem Cells, Biotechnology, Parthenogenesis

CONTACTS:
International Stem Cell Corporation
Kenneth C. Aldrich, Chairman
760-940-6383
kaldrich@intlstemcell.com
Or
Jeffrey Janus
Sr. Vice President, Operations
760-640-6383
jjanus@intlstemcell.com

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International Stem cell Corporation Chairman Discusses Recent Stem Cell Research Funding Decision

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on International Stem cell Corporation Chairman Discusses Recent Stem Cell Research Funding Decision

This is Ken Aldrich and I am Chairman of International Stem Cell Corporation and I thought I should comment briefly on the recent decision of the federal district court of the District of Columbia concerning stem cell research.

What the court did was to announce that it was prohibiting the use of federal funding by the NIH for embryonic stem cell research which is a major blow if the decision is upheld for the stem cell industry. It’s interesting because it actually does not affect International Stem Cell Corporation in any direct negative manner.

The truth of the matter is we have not been able to use federal funding since the very beginning of the company because of a particular provision in the Dickey Wicker amendment that specifically calls out parthenogenic stem cells as a form of embryo, in spite of the fact that they genuinely are not an embryo in fact cannot ever become any living human being and don’t involve the destruction of anything that could become human being. Nevertheless, we have always been caught up in the Dickey Wicker amendment. So we haven’t been hurt by this decision, if anything it has perhaps leveled the playing field for us a bit with the embryonic stem cell group.

But the bottom line is we don’t really think it is good for the country and we hope there will be a change. But we do hope is that perhaps this will open the political debate and as people begin to look at the broader spectrum and realize that parthenogenic stem cell, which is our stock and trade, do not involve the destruction of any embryos, it may be that the specific language of the Dickey Wicker amendment can ultimately be removed and we would then become eligible along with everyone else for federal funding through the NIH and other government programs. If so, it would be a wonderful result. In the meantime, it is a difficult time for everyone in the industry. We’ll keep you informed. Thank you

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International Stem Cell Corporation Formalizes Stem Cell Based Eye Care Programs into Cytovis™

§ October 11th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on International Stem Cell Corporation Formalizes Stem Cell Based Eye Care Programs into Cytovis™

International Stem Cell Corporation (OTCBB:ISCO), http://www.internationalstemcell.com, today announced that its stem cell therapeutic programs focused on protective, transparent corneas (CytoCor™) in the front of the eye and the light-sensitive retinal tissue (CytoRet™) in the back of the eye will be formalized into a new business unit, Cytovis™. Together these programs will leverage external and internal development, regulatory and commercial expertise in cellular ophthalmology to form a focused portfolio of complementary product candidates designed to address high unmet medical needs with apparent pharmacoeconomic and quality of life benefits.


CytoCor is the brand name for ISCO’s corneal tissue that can be derived from the company’s proprietary parthenogenetic stem cells or commonly used embryonic stem cells. Research and development with partners Absorption Systems in the US,Sankara Nethralaya in India and Automation Partnership in the UK continues for the purpose of optimizing the tissue for transplantation in the 10 million people worldwide suffering from corneal vision impairment and as an alternative to the use of live animals and animal eyes in the $500+M market for safety testing of drugs, chemicals and consumer products. ISCO’s goal in the coming months is to establish funding and infrastructure in India for accelerated development of CytoCor for the therapeutic application and to advance and implement the chemical testing application with partners in the US and Europe.


CytoRet is the brand name for ISCO’s stem cell-derived retinal tissue. ISCO is using its parthenogenetic stem cells to develop individual retinal pigmented epithelial (‘RPE’) cells and layered retinal structures internally and in collaboration with the laboratory of Dr. Hans Keirstead, Professor of Anatomy and Neurobiology at the University of California, Irvine. ISCO recently commenced a new research collaboration with UC Irvine to launch the next phase of its retinal studies with that institution, including preclinical trials. Potential therapeutic applications include retinitis pigmentosa, an untreatable inherited disease affecting about 100,000 Americans, and the dry form of age-related macular degeneration, a major cause of blindness in the elderly of the Western world. ISCO’s goal is to establish functional proof of concept for RPE cellular therapy in models of human disease in the next twelve-eighteen months.


Jointly referred to as Cytovis (‘cyto’ for cellular, ‘vis’ for vision), these two cellular ophthalmology programs share a number of features and benefits. First, with the aging of the population worldwide and the growing number of work-related eye injuriesin India, China and other major countries, the market opportunity is growing steadily. Second, there are strong pharmacoeconomic and quality-of-life rationales for full or partial vision restoration or delay of vision impairment diseases. Third, delivery of cells and tissues to the confined anatomy of the eye inherently provides for better safety and efficacy than, for example, the systemic circulation or the central nervous system. This will likely result in lower regulatory barriers and shorter and less costly development paths compared to that of anatomically deeper and more widespread diseases. Fourth, a number of eye diseases cannot be treated with surgery or traditional small molecule or protein therapeutics, yet cell and tissue therapy is proven to work but currently limited by availability of safe and sufficient cells and tissue from human donors. Finally, eye care development programs like CytoCor and CytoRet share a number of regulatory, development and commercial aspects that make it feasible for a relatively small team to produce substantial clinical outcomes and achieve competitive presence in the marketplace alone or in collaboration with dedicated partners.


Brian Lundstrom, ISCO’s President, says: ‘ISCO’s proprietary parthenogenetic stem cell technology continues to form the foundation for the company’s long term regenerative medicine therapy programs. In the nearer term, CytoCor and CytoRet’s unique benefits in the field of cellular ophthalmology offer the potential for partnering and funding at a relatively early stage. Combined with the current and future revenue of Lifeline Cell Technology and the revenue potential of Lifeline Skin Care, scheduled for launch in the 4th quarter, Cytovis adds significantly to ISCO’s diversity and value creation potential for its investor base in a cost-efficient fashion.’


ABOUT INTERNATIONAL STEM CELL CORPORATION (ISCO.OB)

International Stem Cell Corporation is a California-based biotechnology company focused on therapeutic and research products. ISCO’s core technology, parthenogenesis, results in creation of pluripotent human stem cells from unfertilized oocytes (eggs). These proprietary cells avoid ethical issues associated with use or destruction of viable human embryos and, unlike all other major stem cell types, can be immune matched and be a source of therapeutic cells with minimal rejection after transplantation into hundreds of millions of individuals across racial groups. ISCO also produces and markets specialized cells and growth media for therapeutic research worldwide through its subsidiary Lifeline Cell Technology, develops a line of cosmeceutical products via its subsidiary Lifeline Skin Care and advances novel human stem cell-based therapies where cells have been proven to be efficacious but traditional small molecule and protein therapeutics do not. More information is available at ISCO’s website, http://www.internationalstemcell.com.


To subscribe to receive ongoing corporate communications please click on the following link: http://www.b2i.us/irpass.asp?BzID=1468&to=ea&s=0.


FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Statements pertaining to anticipated technological developments and therapeutic applications, the potential benefits of collaborations, affiliations, and other opportunities for the company and its subsidiaries, along with other statements about the future expectations, beliefs, goals, plans, or prospects expressed by management constitute forward-looking statements. Any statements that are not historical fact (including, but not limited to statements that contain words such as “will,” “should,” “believes,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “estimates,”) should also be considered to be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in the development and/or commercialization of potential products, uncertainty in the results of clinical trials or regulatory approvals, need and ability to obtain future capital, application of capital resources among competing uses, and maintenance of intellectual property rights. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements and as such should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect the company’s business, particularly those mentioned in the cautionary statements found in the company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.


Key Words: Stem Cells, Biotechnology, Parthenogenesis


International Stem Cell Corporation
Kenneth C. Aldrich, Chairman
760-940-6383
kaldrich@intlstemcell.com
or
Brian Lundstrom, President
760-640-6383
bl@intlstemcell.com

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Video: Summary of Recent Developments in Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine from Kenneth Aldrich, Chairman of International Stem Cell Corporation

§ August 18th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Video: Summary of Recent Developments in Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine from Kenneth Aldrich, Chairman of International Stem Cell Corporation

Greetings. This is Ken Aldrich, I am Chairman of International Stem Cell Corporation and thought I would share with you briefly some of the thoughts that I’ve had recently about developments in the stem cell and regenerative medicine area. One of the things that I have noticed from a lot of emails that we get, there is a fair amount of confusion out there about the significance of some of the new events that have taken place.

Specifically, I have gotten a lot of requests to explain what the impact of the recent announcement by Geron Corporation that they had entered FDA human trials might be. Well frankly, it is a very, very important step and one that benefits, I think, everyone in our industry and I wanted to comment on it a little bit. What that means is that one of the companies in our field has finally found the mechanism and found the procedures to begin the process of bringing cells to the clinic through human trials. So Geron, which is one of the largest companies, and has spent an enormous amount of money developing this, is now leading the path for all of us. I think we will learn from their experiences and it will make the path getting through to the FDA a lot more productive for all of us that follow.

There is another aspect to this however, that is unique to our company, International Stem Cell Corporation, in that we have also realized that the United States in only one part of the global market. And as a result, we’ve spent a lot of energy over the last year or so exploring foreign collaborations in those areas where perhaps the US is not the most attractive market. For example, we are working in India with replacing human corneas with corneas developed from our parthenogenic stem cells. The U.S. is probably not a major market for this because our systems here in this country allow for cornea transplants rather well. But in countries like India, as well as China and Korea and other places, the infrastructure doesn’t exist to harvest corneas from cadavers and deliver them and as a result, we have a wide open market there with enormous interest. I think that is one example of how the international market will impact the development of regenerative medicine.

We’re looking at that and we are looking at a variety of other areas and I’m sure other companies are doing the same. Eventually, we are all in this boat together to try to cure major diseases. We’re delighted with the progress with the FDA from companies here. We’ll be following in those footsteps when we can and we also be hopefully be leading the way in some of the international collaborations that may make all of us better off in the world of regenerative medicine.

Thank you.

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Partnership Pays Off

§ August 17th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Partnership Pays Off

Northern Exposure by Emmet Pierce, San Diego Business Journal, August 16, 2010. Excerpt:

An example of San Diegans collaborating with Canadians is the work that has taken place at the UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center in cooperation with research at the University of Toronto. The partnership has enabled San Diego researchers to acquire a $20 million grant to develop drugs to be used against leukemia stem cells, Barr says.Dr. Catriona Jamieson, director of the stem cell research program at the Moores center, said scientists from Toronto and San Diego share “a deep and abiding interest in cancer stem cell biology.” The Canadian consulate in San Diego was instrumental in helping to create a relationship in which both institutions would benefit, sharing information and applying for funds to support their research.

“The idea was to establish a Canada-California cancer stem cell initiative and obtain connections with Canadian funding agencies, particularly Genome Canada and the Ministry of Health,” she said.

Jamieson added, “The most important thing is it allows people with disparate abilities and backgrounds to work together on the same problem.”

Barr said the University of Toronto also was able to secure a $20 million research grant because of the collaboration, “so the team is greater than the sum of its parts.”

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FDA files injunction again Regenerative Sciences citing Regenexx violates regulations

§ August 12th, 2010 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on FDA files injunction again Regenerative Sciences citing Regenexx violates regulations

For those of you who follow this blog, you’ll imagine my surprise to wake up the morning to the following announcement from the FDA:
_____________________________________________________________
FDA NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Release: August 6, 2010
Media Inquiries: Shelly Burgess, 301-796-4651, shelly.burgess@fda.hhs.gov
Consumer Inquiries: 888-INFO-FDA
FDA Seeks Injunction Against Colorado Manufacturer of Cultured Cell Product
Violations of current good manufacturing practice and labeling requirements cited
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is seeking an injunction in federal court against Regenerative Sciences LLC, of Broomfield, Colo., citing violations of current good manufacturing practice (cGMP) that cause its cultured cell product to be adulterated. The product is also misbranded due to the lack of adequate directions for use and the failure to bear the “Rx only” symbol.
The company’s cultured cell product is derived from a patient’s bone marrow or fluid surrounding the patient’s joints (synovial fluid). The cells are grown, processed, and mixed with drug products outside the body before being injected back into the patient.
Regenerative Sciences’ cultured cell product is not approved by the FDA, and no adequate and well-controlled studies have been done to demonstrate its safety or effectiveness for any indication.
“FDA recognizes the importance of the development of novel and promising new therapies,” said Karen Midthun, M.D., acting director of FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research. “However, when companies like Regenerative Sciences fail to comply with FDA laws and regulations, they put the public’s health at risk.”
The complaint for the injunction was filed Aug. 6, 2010, by the Justice Department on behalf of the FDA in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, against Regenerative Sciences and three of its employees, Christopher J. Centeno, M.D., John R. Schultz, M.D., and Michelle R. Cheever. The injunction would permanently prevent the company and cited individuals from adulterating and misbranding the cultured cell product while the product, or one or more of its components, is held for sale after shipment in interstate commerce.
Regenerative Sciences has agreed to cease production of the cultured cell product while the case is pending.
The FDA warned Regenerative Sciences about its cGMP violations as recently as June 2010. The company failed to make sufficient corrections, and the conduct of the individuals cited in the complaint demonstrates refusal to comply with the law.
http://www.celltherapyblog.com hosted by http://www.celltherapygroup.com
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