Newark, Calif., July 22, 2011 – StemCells, Inc. (NASDAQ: STEMD) announced today publication of a collaborative study which used commercially available SC Proven serum-free cell culture media for the reproducible and robust production of large numbers of genetically stable, self-renewing cells that retain true multi-potent biological function over extended culture periods. This work overcomes a key hurdle to the use of non-immortalized cells for regenerative medicine, and demonstrates the utility of human tissue-derived neural stem (NS) cells1 as a scalable platform for cell-based drug discovery and drug screening applications. The paper was published in a special edition of Neurochemistry International dedicated to “The Potential of Stem Cells for 21st Century Neuroscience” and is available online at http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0197018611002452
“We can now say our serum-free RHB-A® and RHB-Basal® culture media are ‘Automation Proven’ for large-scale production of billions of stem cells per week for regenerative medicine applications,” said Stewart Craig, Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Development & Operations at StemCells, Inc. “This work by our scientists and their collaborators underscores the rationale for, and the advantage of, using well-defined, serum-free and where possible animal component-free reagents for cell culture and cell-based assays because it eliminates contaminants that cause culture variability and that impair assay performance.”
Furthermore, Hook et al used the CompacT SelecT™ system from TAP Biosystems for the at scale automated dispensing of NS cells into multi-well plates with onward incubation for in vitro cell-based drug screening assays. These assays also used the serum-free RHB-A and RHB-Basal culture media along with the serum-free and animal component-free NDiff® N2-AF and NDiff® N27-AF culture supplements. This newly reported data adds to that previously presented by the Company at international regenerative medicine and drug screening meetings2,3 in which the same SC Proven reagents were used for the automated scale-up, production and assay screening of human induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell-derived NS cell lines.
The tools and technologies showcased in this work are components of the platform that StemCells has integrated to help partners address all phases of drug discovery and development, from initial screening through in vitro characterization, and then in vivo validation of lead candidates using the actual human target cell (http://www.stemcellsinc.com/Tools-and-Technologies/Drug-Discovery-and-Development.htm). A comprehensive overview of the Company’s drug discovery platform was presented last month at the 12th Drug Discovery Leaders Summit in Zurich, Switzerland.
- Hook L, et al., Non-immortalized Human Neural Stem (NS) Cells as a Scalable Platform for Cellular Assays. (2011) Neurochemistry International doi: 10.1016/j.neuint.2011.06.024
- “Platform Solutions for Stem Cell-based Drug Discovery” presented at the Terrapinn “World Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine Conference” in London, UK, May 2010
- “Platform Solutions for Stem Cell-based Drug Discovery” presented at the Select Biosciences “Stem Cells Europe” meeting in Edinburgh, UK, August 2010
About SC Proven Products
The SC Proven product portfolio comprises a range of products for the detection, isolation, expansion, differentiation, and characterization of a variety of different human and animal cell types. The entire SC Proven product catalog and online ordering can be found at www.scproven.com.
About StemCells, Inc.
StemCells, Inc. is engaged in the research, development, and commercialization of cell-based therapeutics and tools for use in stem cell-based research and drug discovery. The Company’s lead therapeutic product candidate, HuCNS-SC® cells (purified human neural stem cells), is currently in development as a potential treatment for a broad range of central nervous system disorders. Clinical trials are currently underway in spinal cord injury and in Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease (PMD), a fatal myelination disorder in children. In addition, the Company plans to file an IND by year-end 2011 to initiate a clinical trial of HuCNS-SC cells in age-related macular degeneration, and is also pursuing preclinical studies of its HuCNS-SC cells in Alzheimer’s disease and stroke. StemCells also markets stem cell research products, including media and reagents, under the SC Proven® brand, and is developing stem cell-based assay platforms for use in pharmaceutical research, drug discovery and drug development. Further information about StemCells is available at http://www.stemcellsinc.com.
Apart from statements of historical fact, the text of this press release constitutes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the U.S. securities laws, and is subject to the safe harbors created therein. These statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the prospect of continued growth of the Company’s SC Proven reagents business; the potential regulatory acceptability of cell culture supplements used to derive cells for human research; clinical development of the Company’s HuCNS-SC cells; the prospects for the Company to pursue non-therapeutic applications of its cell-based technologies; and the future business operations of the Company. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this news release. The Company does not undertake to update any of these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that occur after the date hereof. Such statements reflect management’s current views and are based on certain assumptions that may or may not ultimately prove valid. The Company’s actual results may vary materially from those contemplated in such forward-looking statements due to risks and uncertainties to which the Company is subject, including those described under the heading “Risk Factors” in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010, and in its subsequent reports on Form 8-K.
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