ALAMEDA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--BioTime, Inc. (NYSE MKT:BTX), a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing and commercializing products addressing degenerative diseases, today announced the formation of AgeX Therapeutics, Inc., which will consolidate certain BioTime subsidiaries and programs in the field of interventional gerontology. The formation of AgeX continues the implementation of BioTime’s strategy to simplify its corporate structure and operations as well as focus resources on the continued clinical development of its two lead programs; Renevia®, a proprietary cell delivery matrix designed to facilitate the stable engraftment of transplanted cells that is currently in a pivotal clinical trial, and OpRegen®, a pluripotent cell-derived cell therapy that is in a Phase 1/2a clinical trial for the dry form of age related macular degeneration (dry-AMD). The formation of AgeX provides the new BioTime subsidiary greater flexibility to explore external financing alternatives as well as strategic options to grow its technology platform.
BioTime’s Co-CEO, Michael D. West, Ph.D., has been considered a foremost expert in regenerative medicine and aging since he founded Geron Corporation in 1990, the first public biotechnology company focused on the biology of human aging. At Geron he led the efforts in the first isolation of human pluripotent stem cells and in telomere biology, the “clocking” mechanism behind human cell aging.
The mission of AgeX is to apply technology related to pluripotent stem cells and telomere biology to aging and age-related disease. AgeX is expected to have three initial areas of focus: 1) the development of pluripotent stem cell-derived brown adipocytes for the treatment of Type II diabetes and potentially obesity; 2) the development of vascular progenitors to improve circulation to ischemic tissues in patients suffering from heart disease; and 3) Induced Tissue Regeneration (iTR)TM - an emerging technology invented and patented by BioTime scientists that is designed to profoundly reprogram aged tissues in the body in a way that can restore a regenerative phenotype normally expressed only in the first few weeks of human development. These technologies were the subject of a recent conference presentation by Dr. West that is available on YouTube called The Future of Aging.
“The biotechnology of aging has finally come of age,” said Dr. West. “The aging U.S. population is the demographic trend of our time. In our opinion, these assets, carefully assembled and developed over the past few years, will facilitate our leadership of the explosive growth of product development in the emerging field of interventional gerontology.”
“The formation of AgeX is in line with our stated objectives of simplification and unlocking value,” said Adi Mohanty, Co-CEO of BioTime. “This step will provide greater flexibility to AgeX as it considers further development of its technology platform and grows its business. This step is also especially important to BioTime as it increasingly focuses its resources on the clinical development of its Ophthalmology, Aesthetics and Therapeutics Delivery products.”
BioTime, Inc. is a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on developing and commercializing novel therapies developed from what the company believes to be the world’s premier collection of pluripotent cell assets. The foundation of BioTime’s core therapeutic technology platform is pluripotent cells that are capable of becoming any of the cell types in the human body. Pluripotent cells have potential application in many areas of medicine with large unmet patient needs, including various age-related degenerative diseases and degenerative conditions for which there presently are no cures. Unlike pharmaceuticals that require a molecular target, therapeutic strategies based on the use of pluripotent cells are generally aimed at regenerating or replacing affected cells and tissues, and therefore may have broader applicability than pharmaceutical products. BioTime also has significant equity holdings in two publicly traded companies, Asterias Biotherapeutics, Inc. and OncoCyte Corporation, which BioTime founded and which, until recently, were majority-owned consolidated subsidiaries of BioTime.
BioTime common stock is traded on the NYSE MKT and TASE under the symbol BTX. For more information, please visit www.biotimeinc.com or connect with the company on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube, and Google+.
Certain statements contained in this release are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Statements pertaining to future financial and/or operating results, future growth in research, technology, clinical development, and potential opportunities for BioTime, Inc. 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, uncertainty in the results of clinical trials or regulatory approvals, need and ability to obtain future capital, 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 business of BioTime, Inc. and its subsidiaries, particularly those mentioned in the cautionary statements found in more detail in the “Risk Factors” section of its Annual Reports on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q filed with the SEC (copies of which may be obtained at www.sec.gov). Subsequent events and developments may cause these forward-looking statements to change. BioTime specifically disclaims any obligation or intention to update or revise these forward-looking statements as a result of changed events or circumstances that occur after the date of this release, except as required by applicable law.
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