VistaGen Therapeutics, a biotechnology company applying stem cell technology for drug rescue, predictive toxicology, and drug metabolism assays, earlier today announced significant advancements in its stem cell technology licensed from the University Health Network (UHN) in Toronto, Canada. The advancements improve the company’s ability to develop new stem cell-based bioassay systems and potentially improved cell therapies for human blood system disorders.
“In collaboration with our long-term strategic partners at UHN, we continue to pioneer stem cell technology that promises to change the way we develop medicine and apply treatment,” stated Shawn K. Singh, CEO of VistaGen. “In addition to creating new capabilities and in vitro assays for drug rescue and predictive toxicology, these advancements open the door to development of new treatments for bone marrow failure, anemia, viral diseases and other conditions that compromise the immune system.”
“Due to only partial understanding of the timing and control of the development of definitive hematopoiesis in humans, scientists were previously limited in their ability to identify and produce, from human pluripotent stem cells, the important precursor for mature red and white cells of the blood,” commented H. Ralph Snodgrass, PhD, VistaGen’s President and Chief Scientific Officer. “The identification and characterization of this important precursor provides a readily accessible pluripotent stem cell-derived target cell population that can be expanded and matured into the types of cells needed for novel in vitro assays and our drug rescue efforts, and enables improved technologies and approaches for future cell therapy collaborations.”
Dr. Gordon Keller, Chairman of UHN’s McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine in Toronto and co-founder of VistaGen, added, “We’ve been working for many years studying in vitro differentiation of pluripotent stem cells trying to identify, and then expand, the first human cell capable of producing the adult blood and immune system. I believe that we now have a better understanding of this important transition from embryonic to adult hematopoiesis, and have the tools to develop improved methods to expand this cell in large numbers for both drug development and cell therapy applications.”
For more information, visit www.VistaGen.com
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