Melbourne, Australia; 30 July 2015:Stem cell and regenerative medicine company, Cynata Therapeutics Ltd (ASX: CYP), announced today that it has initiated a collaboration with the University of Sydney to test the potential therapeutic efficacy of its Cymerus™ mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in animal models of myocardial infarction (heart attack) and associated heart rhythm abnormalities.
These studies will be performed under the leadership of Dr James Chong, a cardiologist at Westmead Hospital and Senior Lecturer in Medicine at the University of Sydney, who is also Research Group Leader at the Westmead Millennium Institute for Medical Research. Dr Chong has extensive experience in stem cell therapy for heart disease and has had several high impact publications, including a breakthrough study that demonstrated regeneration of non-human primate hearts, which received worldwide attention after its publication in the highly prestigious journal Nature in 2014. He has also won numerous awards for this research, including the New South Wales Ministerial Award for Rising Stars in Cardiovascular Research, the Heart Foundation Future Leaders Fellowship and the Sydney Medical Foundation Chapman Fellowship.
"Cardiovascular diseases are the greatest non-communicable cause of mortality worldwide and is leading to an increased burden of heart failure. I believe the use of cellular therapies to stimulate regeneration of the failing heart has the potential to significantly change this field", said Dr Chong. "MSCs from other sources have been shown to improve cardiac function after injury and are already being tested in clinical trials. Cynata's manufacturing technology could facilitate a reliable and consistent supply of MSCs in large numbers. This would be a particular advantage when it comes to conditions, such as heart failure", he concluded.
"We are delighted to collaborate with the University of Sydney and have the program directed by the distinguished scientist, Dr Chong. This exciting project builds on Cynata's existing collaborations with leading academic and medical centres both in Australia and overseas and adds a further dimension to our ongoing commercial partnering discussions. The Cymerus™ technology is perfectly suited to the manufacturing requirements of cell-based therapies for cardiovascular disease, as it allows us to manufacture MSCs economically at scale." said Cynata Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Dr Ross Macdonald.
About Cynata Therapeutics (ASX: CYP)
Cynata Therapeutics Ltd (ASX: CYP) is an Australian stem cell and regenerative medicine company that is developing a therapeutic stem cell platform technology, Cymerus™, originating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, a world leader in stem cell research. The proprietary Cymerus™ technology addresses a critical shortcoming in existing methods of production of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) for therapeutic use, which is the ability to achieve economic manufacture at commercial scale. Cymerus™ does so through the production of a particular type of MSC precursor, called a mesenchymoangioblast (MCA). The Cymerus™ MCA platform provides a source of MSCs that is independent of donor limitations and provides a potential "off-the-shelf" stem cell platform for therapeutic product use, with a pharmaceutical business model and economies of scale. This has the potential to create a new standard in the emergent arena of stem cell therapeutics and provides both a unique differentiator and an important competitive position.
About the University of Sydney
The University of Sydney is a world-leading, comprehensive research and teaching institution, consistently ranked in the top 0.3% of universities in the world. We are unique among Australia's leading universities in the variety of pathways we offer our 51,000 students who come from more than 140 countries. Progressive thinking, breaking with convention, challenging the status quo and improving the world around us is in our DNA.
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