The RegMed Daily Dialogue, Thursday, 5/12/11, What’s up?
Regenerative medicine/stem cell universe stocks are relatively flat in mid-day trading on Thursday (5/12/11). The NASDAQ is up +1.78 (0.06%) to 2846.84. The Dow is down -25.58 (-0.20%) to 12,604.45. So, what’s driving the regenerative medicine – stem cell market today …
- ACTC.OB, AMEX: CUR, CYTX, GERN, IMUC.OB, ISCO.OB, OSIR and LSE: RENE.L are up!
Scientists for the First Time Regenerate Sections of Retinas and Increase Visual Function With Stem Cells Derived From Skin: Scientists from Schepens Eye Research Institute are the first to regenerate large areas of damaged retinas and improve visual function using IPS cells (induced pluripotent stem cells) derived from skin. The results of their study, which is published in PLoS ONE this month, hold great promise for future treatments and cures for diseases such as age-related macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa, diabetic retinopathy and other retinal diseases that affect millions worldwide.
Pluristem (PSTI) Q1/11 Results: Q1/11 net loss of $2.61M or $0.07 per share
Tengion (TNGN) Q1/11 Results: Q1/11 (adjusted) net loss of $6.5M or $0.41 per share
Liver Cells from Human iPSCs found to engraft and function: Researchers have demonstrated that mature and immature liver cells generated from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) derived from multiple adult cell types are as effective as both embryonic stem cell (ESC)-derived hepatocytes and primary human hepatocytes at engrafting and functioning in the livers of experimental mice. The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine team that carried out the studies say iPSC-derived cells were equivalent to the ESC-derived cells and primary hepatocytes in terms of their capacity to regenerate damaged livers and with respect to the levels of human-specific liver proteins they secreted into the animals’ bloodstreams. Hepatocytes derived from different cell types retained some epigenetic memory of their germ-layer origins and showed noticeable differences in epigenetic profiles to those of primary human hepatocytes, but this didn’t seem to affect their function in vivo. The team reports its findings in Science Translational Medicine in a paper titled “In Vivo Liver Regeneration Potential of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells from Diverse Origins.”
TiGenix announces terms of its rights offering: TiGenix NV (NYSE Euronext Brussels: TIG) announces the terms of a capital increase with preferential subscription rights for an amount of up to EUR 15,187,111 against issuance of up to 15,187,111 new shares without VVPR Strips at an issuance price of EUR 1.00 per new share in the ratio of 1 new share for 5 preferential subscription rights (1 for 5 Rights Offering).
Shire on hunt for assets in stem cells: British drug maker Shire Plc (SHP.L) would like to acquire experimental products derived from stem cells, but the company’s chief executive said it is hard to find assets that are likely to make money. Speaking at the Reuters Health Summit, Angus Russell said one area of medicine that will be “transformational” are stem cells technologies hold the potential to help the body’s cells and tissue regenerate and fight diseases ranging from diabetes to Alzheimer’s. “The science is there,” said Russell, “the challenge is finding something you can turn into a business. Shire is nonetheless interested in acquisitions in the space, and is making a series of modest investments — of between $3 million and $5 million — in young companies that are engaged in gene manipulation and regenerative medicine. “Somewhere in the future there may be an opportunity to buy into these genetic technologies,” he said. Russell has a rigorous and unsentimental approach to acquisitions and investment. No matter how attractive the science, he needs to be convinced, at an early stage, that an experimental product can generate a profit over the long term.
BioMimetic Therapeutics (BMTI) plunges on dim FDA view of Augment bone graft: Shares of BMTI continued their slide today after plunging 35.3% yesterday on news of the FDA’s dim view of its Augment bone graft product. The federal watchdog agency released its summary of the pre-market approval application for Augment ahead of a special panel review tomorrow. The FDA said a clinical study of the product, which is used to stimulate bone growth in foot and ankle fusion procedures, showed that it was not as successful as grafts taken from patients’ own bones. The agency’s Orthopedic and Rehabilitation Devices panel is set to meet tomorrow for a public hearing, after which it will vote whether to recommend that the FDA approve the device. Augment is a drug/device combination that uses recombinant human platelet-derived growth factors. BMTI won Health Canada approval from Health Canada in 11/09 for mid-foot, hind-foot and ankle fusion indications. Augment has only been used in IDE studies in the US.
Scientists generate liver cells from skin: A team of scientists in China has found a way to restore damaged livers using adult skin stem cells. The technique raises the possibility of what one liver specialist is calling the “Holy Grail” – that people now needing liver transplants could be simply treated with an injection of their own cells. Researchers spent three years on the study in which they took skin cells from mice to reproduce fully functional liver cells. The results, being published in the Journal of Nature show the mice were able to live healthy lives.