BioE and South Eastern Sydney Illawarra Area Health Service Initiate Stem Cell Research Partnership
News May 18, 2006
BioE®, Inc., a biomedical company providing enabling human cord blood stem cells, and the South Eastern Sydney Illawarra Area Health Service (SESIAHS) have announced a joint research partnership to evaluate the potential of BioE's cord blood-derived stem cell to form pancreatic beta cells.
These cells, which are absent in Type 1 diabetes patients, are responsible for producing insulin that normalizes the body's blood glucose levels.
As part of this agreement, SESIAHS will conduct translational research to determine whether pancreatic precursor cells developed by BioE from its Multi-Lineage Progenitor Cell™ (MLPC™), the company's proprietary human cord-blood-derived stem cell, will function properly when transplanted into diabetic mouse models.
SESIAHS also will determine if pancreatic beta cells derived from the MLPC through SESIAHS's unique methodologies perform appropriately in these animal models.
"While insulin injections can be an effective means to help lower the elevated blood glucose levels in people with Type 1 diabetes, they are not a substitute for pancreatic beta cells that secrete insulin in a finely tuned manner," said Professor Bernie Tuch, M.D., Ph.D., SESIAHS Director of the Diabetes Transplant Unit, where the experiments will be performed.
"Additionally, current cell therapies in development for Type 1 diabetes are limited in scope due to small quantities of viable pancreatic precursor cells. As a result, developing pancreatic beta cells from stem cells, such as BioE's MLPC, represents a new and promising method for finding a treatment to combat one of the world's most prevalent and costly diseases."
"We continue to identify opportunities nationally and internationally to partner with leading institutions and organizations to further our understanding of the MLPC for clinical research and therapeutic applications," said Michael Haider, president and chief executive officer for BioE.
"The SESIAHS is a great partner for us to have help determine if the MLPC can one day be used to treat such a widespread disease as diabetes. Professor Tuch and his team have created insulin-producing cells from multiple sources during the past 25 years. We are confident that combining this expertise with our knowledge of cord blood stem cells will lead to significant progress in the treatment of Type 1 diabetes."
"Our partnership with BioE is a prime example of two organizations capitalizing on the research strengths of the other, regardless of the countries of origin," Tuch added. "Our collaboration ultimately should translate into positive outcomes in the clinical arena much faster than if we were to undertake these efforts individually."