SOURCE: Medistem Inc.
MRI Study in Sheep Shows Changes in Brain Structures Associated With Scrapie Infection
SAN DIEGO, CA–(Marketwire – December 13, 2010) – Medistem Inc. (
The study, whose senior author was Dr. Joel Stutman and funded by the Louis and Lena Minkoff Foundation, compared 37 sheep that were positive for the infectious protein associated with scrapie, called PrPSc, to 80 sheep that had no evidence of the disease-causing protein. It was found that all sheep possessing the protein, whether symptomatic or non-symptomatic, exhibited a unique change in the anatomy of the brain as detected by MRI. Specifically, a greater ventricle to cerebrum area ratio was found in MRI images of infected sheep compared to healthy sheep.
“We are extremely grateful to Dr. Stutman and his team for allowing us to collaborate on this important project which integrated computer-based image analysis techniques with molecular diagnostics to demonstrate a very important finding: that in sheep with scrapie specific MRI changes can be indicative of neurodegeneration before symptoms appear,” said Vladimir Bogin, MD, Chairman and President of Medistem. “One of the major findings in the published stem cell clinical trials has been that some patients respond extremely well, while others do not. Medistem believes that development of disease-assessing techniques such as the one reported, will allow for better selection of patients that would respond to stem cell-based interventions.”
Medistem has filed an IND with the FDA for human trials of its universal donor stem cell, the Endometrial Regenerative Cell (ERC). The first product in development is a treatment for critical limb ischemia, a condition that causes approximately 150,000 amputations per year in the US. Published research demonstrates that Endometrial Regenerative Cells can generate lung, liver, pancreas, bone, muscle, heart, fat, and brain tissue, thus the company is currently exploring other disease indications.
“Medistem collaborators have already used Endometrial Regenerative Cells in the treatment of patients with multiple sclerosis, a neurodegenerative condition which creates similar brain alterations as seen in the current study,” said Thomas Ichim, CEO of Medistem and co-author of the publication. “The reason for our participation in the sheep scrapie project is to be at the cutting edge of imaging studies in the neurosciences. This, in our opinion, allows us to: a) Select better inclusion/exclusion criteria for our future multiple sclerosis studies; and b) Objectively analyze effects of our intervention in humans.”
Endometrial Regenerative Cells are currently available for sale as a research reagent through General Biotechnology LLC at http://www.gnrlbiotech.com/?page=catalog_endometrial_regenerative_cells.
The study, entitled “Generalized cerebral atrophy seen on MRI in a naturally exposed animal model for Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease” can be found online at http://www.translational-medicine.com/content/pdf/1479-5876-8-125.pdf.
About Medistem Inc.
Medistem Inc. is a biotechnology company developing technologies related to adult stem cell extraction, manipulation, and use for treating inflammatory and degenerative diseases. The company’s lead product, the endometrial regenerative cell (ERC), is a “universal donor” stem cell being developed for critical limb ischemia. A publication describing the support for use of ERC for this condition may be found at http://www.translational-medicine.com/content/pdf/1479-5876-6-45.pdf. ERC can be purchased for scientific use through Medistem’s collaborator, General Biotechnology http://www.gnrlbiotech.com/?page=catalog_endometrial_regenerative_cells.
This press release does not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy any of our securities. This press release may contain certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements are inherently subject to risks and uncertainties, some of which cannot be predicted or quantified. Future events and actual results could differ materially from those set forth in, contemplated by, or underlying the forward-looking information. Factors which may cause actual results to differ from our forward-looking statements are discussed in our Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2007 as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Vladimir Bogin, MD
Chairman of the Board
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