Pluristem Acquires Patents and Technology for the Three Dimensional Expansion of Human Cells
News May 23, 2007
Pluristem Life Systems, Inc. has announced it has purchased patents for its stem cell production technology from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology (Technion) and the Weizmann Institute of Science (Weizmann) for approximately $2 million.
The purchased patents replace a previous license agreement with Technion and Weizmann where Pluristem had exclusive rights to the technology in exchange for royalties.
Pluristem Chairman and CEO, Mr. Zami Aberman commented, "By owning these patents exclusively, the Company not only gains full access to its IP portfolio, but also enables substantially more future financial returns as we have the sole right to sub-license our technology without the obligation to pay up to a 25% royalty fee.”
He continued, “We believe that our revenues will be substantial in the coming years and this purchase will improve our margins as well as increase value for our shareholders. We intend to develop this technology platform into a functional stem cell production system for the treatment of a variety of indications; the first being a safe, effective and efficient alternative to bone marrow transplantation.”
The technology covered under the agreement pertains to a three dimensional (3-D) bioreactor system known as PluriX™. This bioreactor creates an environment similar to natural bone marrow and enhances the expansion of mesenchymal stem cells that are obtained from the placenta, termed Placental eXpanded (PLX) cells. These resulting stromal cells are allogeneic and will not require HLA matching when used in transplant therapies.
Using PluriX™, Pluristem estimates they can produce up to 1,000 patient doses per placenta at a significantly lower cost than current methods.