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Thread: Utah researchers seek clinical trial of stem cell treatment

  1. #1

    Utah researchers seek clinical trial of stem cell treatment

    Utah researchers seek clinical trial of stem cell treatment

    Health » Utah company and U. of U. will share in a $5 million grant to develop the therapy.
    By Brooke Adams

    The Salt Lake Tribune

    Updated: 06/02/2009 05:35:52 PM MDT

    The mice at the top of a column of stacked plastic bins at Q Therapeutics are shivering so hard they seem to be jumping.

    Their nonstop shivering and seizures are caused by a genetic defect that robs the mice of the crucial myelin sheath that surrounds nerve cells and helps them send signals. Because of the defect, the mice are soon paralyzed and die prematurely.

    It is a related problem -- loss of this myelin sheath -- that in humans causes the progressive loss of function in multiple sclerosis and several other diseases that can cause paralysis in humans.

    And that's why what has happened to the mice is so promising: After being treated with an adult stem cell therapy developed at Q Therapeutics, they are no longer shivering.

    The product, called Q-Cells, also may be applicable to such neuro-degenerative diseases as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS -- better known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

    Now, the National Institutes of Health have awarded a $5 million grant to Q Therapeutics, the University of Utah's Cell Therapy Facility and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, which as a team have had success in animal models of ALS.

    The funding will help support work needed to get permission from the Food and Drug Administration to start human clinical trials at Johns Hopkins. If efforts to raise additional funds are successful, those trials would begin next year.


  2. #2
    Sounds exciting, but they didn't mention spinal cord injury.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Bloomfield Hills,MI
    Quote Originally Posted by gcblarsen View Post
    Sounds exciting, but they didn't mention spinal cord injury.
    agreed...this indeed sounds exciting

    from their website:

    Q's initial development efforts have focused on natural cell-based products that replace insulating myelin on damaged neurons, with the goal of restoring normal neuron function. Our first product, called Q-Cells®, is designed to address a wide range of diseases, including multiple sclerosis (MS), transverse myelitis, cerebral palsy, spinal cord injury, and certain types of stroke. Our patented cellular technologies and manufacturing processes, combined with an experienced management team and a focused strategy, will enable us to develop a comprehensive product pipeline to treat CNS diseases in ways no existing drug can.

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