HOUSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Hope Biosciences Stem Cell Research Foundation (HBSCRF) successfully completes the first ten treatments for immune support against COVID-19. This is the first of three FDA-approved clinical trials targeting COVID-19 that the foundation is executing. The first study is providing autologous, adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (HB-adMSCs) to patients who have already banked their stem cells with Hope Biosciences. Many patients choose to bank their adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells with Hope Biosciences with the hope of receiving their cells in the future for injury, illness, or ideally, prevention.
HBSCRF celebrated its Grand Opening in March 2020, with the mission of funding translational research in regenerative medicine to develop cures for all. At the time, Coronavirus was becoming an increasing concern in the US. HBSCRF and its board members understood the need of the community and decided to pivot the focus to preventing and treating COVID-19. “It is a privilege and an honor to serve our community during this pandemic. HBSCRF has the unique ability to adapt quickly, developing clinical trials and achieving FDA approval so we can provide stem cells immediately. We wanted to provide options for treatment that would address the full spectrum of needs – prevention through severe illness. These trials are allowing us to help as many people as possible, and we are so grateful for this opportunity,” said Katherine Ruppert, Director of Research at HBSCRF.
The second trial, expected to begin enrolling participants in May, will focus on frontline workers. Included will be doctors, nurses, support staff, etc., who are at a higher risk of exposure. Participants will receive 5 infusions of allogeneic HB-adMSCs with the purpose of providing immune support against COVID-19. The third trial is designed for patients already hospitalized with COVID-19. Patients will receive 4 infusions of allogeneic HB-adMSCs or placebo, in addition to standard care. Primary endpoints for these studies include development of symptoms associated with COVID-19, new requirement for invasive mechanical ventilation, and 28-day mortality. Secondary endpoints will measure regular lab values, as well as inflammatory markers, a key component of the cytokine storm that has been associated with increased progression of COVID-19 infection.
These studies are fully funded by the Hope Biosciences Stem Cell Research Foundation and strictly for humanitarian purposes. Hope Biosciences Stem Cell Research Foundation is administered through the Greater Houston Community Foundation (GHCF). As one of the leading philanthropic grant makers, GHCF is proud to partner with donors to create a meaningful and long-lasting impact in our community. Focused on the community, the core values of HBSCRF include stewardship, transparency and accountability. This pandemic has created a tremendous opportunity to share abilities and resources to contribute to a solution. HBSCRF aims to be completely transparent with its operations and collaborations, providing clear information about all aspects of the studies. Please visit hopebio.org for progress updates.