CARLSBAD, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Accelerated Biosciences, a regenerative medicine innovator, announced today new data that further demonstrates statistically significant cytolysis with induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived natural killer (NK) cells programmed from its ethically sourced human trophoblast stem cells (hTSCs). Pluristyx, a Seattle-based firm supporting drug development, regenerative medicine, and cell and gene therapies, further confirmed Accelerated Biosciences’ hTSC line offers before-unrealized opportunities in cell-specific therapeutics. Along with this recent data on successful iPSC differentiation, Accelerated Biosciences has already demonstrated efficient differentiation of its pluripotent stem cells with remarkable doubling times and growth characteristics to programmed NK, cartilage, bone, fat, neuron, pancreas, liver, and secretome cells.
“This new data validates our findings,” explains Yuta Lee, President and Founder of Accelerated Biosciences. “We know the properties of our trophoblast stem cells have been long-sought by the medical science community because of the potential to speed and amplify the development of life-saving therapeutics; they’re immune privileged, chromosomally stable (not tumorigenic), pathogen free, pluripotent, easy to scale and manufacturer, and of special interest, they are ethically sourced from the chorionic villi (pre-placental tissue) of non-viable and often life-threatening tubal ectopic pregnancies.” Mr. Lee’s father, Professor Jau-Nan Lee, MB, MD, PhD, an obstetrics and gynecologic physician and researcher in Taiwan, first isolated hTSC in 2003. Mr. Lee created Accelerated Biosciences to elevate the visibility of this pluripotent human trophoblast stem cell platform to those engaged in developing allogeneic cell therapeutics and has been instrumental in the filing and prosecution of intellectual property to protect the company’s hTSC platform – to date holding 34 patents.
Benjamin Fryer, PhD, Co-founder and CEO of Pluristyx, worked closely with Accelerated Biosciences to prepare much of its key hTSC data. Dr. Fryer, a trophoblast expert who was previously a research scientist at Janssen Research & Development of Johnson & Johnson, now serves on Accelerated Biosciences’ Scientific Advisory Board. “Initially I was skeptical these cells were what they said they were. If we hadn’t grown and characterized them in our lab, I might have remained skeptical. These are indeed trophoblast stem cells,” explained Dr. Fryer. “The potential of these cells is enormous. One of the industry’s largest challenges is that it’s almost impossible to scale primary cells. These cells are scalable. With these cells you can make the amount required for millions of patients and they’re sourced compliant to regulatory requirements. We’ve made IPS cells (induced pluripotent stem cells) and NK (natural killer) cells from them, which is the next wave of cells for cell therapies. For therapeutic developers, because these cells are not sourced from a person or viable embryo, these cells deliver the trifecta of legal, ethical, and IP advantages.”
“As the biotechnology industry works toward developing therapies that target only diseased cells without harming healthy cells and tissues, cell-based therapies draw increasing interest,” explains industry expert, Martina Molsbergen, CEO of C14 Consulting, who has partnered with Accelerated Biosciences in a business development role. “With all the promise that cell therapies hold, the biotechnology industry also remains concerned that the therapeutics are derived in a socially and ethically responsible manner. Accelerated Biosciences has discovered and is now offering what scientists see as the holy grail of stem cell sources.”
Prominent biosciences experts have been drawn to Accelerated Biosciences’ cell breakthrough. Protein chemist and molecular biologist Igor Fisch, PhD, former President and CEO of Selexis, Geneva, Switzerland, recognizes the impact that Accelerated Biosciences’ hTSCs will have on human health: “Not only are these cells ‘politically correct’, but they can also differentiate. Because they are sourced from pre-placenta material, they’re immune privileged, which means that are not seen as foreign by the human body. With these cells, we can create a cell bank – a single source for a wide range of patients.”
Peter Hudson, FTSE, BSc Hons, PhD, Chief Scientist and a senior advisor to Avipep P/L in Melbourne, Australia, and an adjunct professor at the University of Queensland, led a large oncology consortium to complete the first Phase 1 clinical trial of a novel engineered antibody targeting prostate and ovarian cancer. Hudson’s interest in Accelerated Biosciences’ hTSCs has evolved into a role on its Scientific Advisory Board. “Trophoblast stem cells are likely to be the next wave of cancer-targeting therapeutics,” explains Dr. Hudson. “The ability to ethically source trophoblast stem cells and program them to target only diseased, cancerous cells is very powerful technology.”
Why are scientists so interested in stem cell-based therapies?
The human body constantly produces specialized cells from its own stem cells (undifferentiated cells) to renew and repair itself. Current therapies harness this power in autologous cell therapies in which the patient’s own cells are removed, differentiated into disease-fighting cells, and reinserted.
What makes the human trophoblast stem cell so important to medical science?
The human trophoblast stem cell (hTSC) comes from placental tissue and has special properties that make it extremely desirable to therapeutic developers. The hTSC is such an early stem cell that it has much more capacity for growth than a stem cell taken from an adult, for example. This means that one cell can become millions. The hTSC also carries with it the same immune-privilege that a growing embryo has inside its mother: it’s not seen as foreign although it’s genetically different than its mother. Unlike other foreign materials, the hTSC is not rejected by the human body, which means that it can be used with many different patients (allogeneic cell therapy). With these benefits, the scientific community holds a high regard for hTSCs, but it also faces socio-ethical concerns about how those stem cells are typically sourced.
Accelerated Biosciences sidesteps hTSC sourcing concerns in a profoundly elegant way. Dr. Jau-Nan Lee, an OB-GYN in Taiwan, found inspiration in what was considered medical waste. When surgical intervention was necessary to remove an ectopic pregnancy that would otherwise risk the woman’s life, the non-viable embryo and pre-placental tissue lodged in the fallopian tube was removed, sent to pathology, and discarded. Gaining permission from institutional colleagues and sampling the pre-placental tissue, Dr. Lee isolated hTSC that offered all the benefits of hTSC – pluripotency, immune privilege, and scalability – without pathogens and without ethical compromises.
About Accelerated Biosciences
Founded in 2013, Accelerated Biosciences is a private company focused on regenerative medicine and built around the hTSC discoveries of obstetrics and gynecology physician and researcher, Professor Jau-Nan Lee, MB, MD, PhD. Accelerated Biosciences holds a large and robust patent portfolio and an encumbrance-free intellectual property (IP) estate. Accelerated Biosciences’ mission is to leverage its renewable, immune-privileged human cell source to fuel breakthrough cell therapies that effectively target the most challenging diseases of the human body. For more information about Accelerated Biosciences, visit acceleratedbio.com or email email@example.com.