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Fibrocell licenses commercialization rights to investigational therapies resulting from UCLA's dermal cell research

Wednesday, May 16 2012 | Comments
Evidence Grade 0 What's This?
Fibrocell Science Inc. signed an exclusive license agreement with The Regents of the University of California for the rights to commercially apply discoveries resulting from an existing scientific collaboration between Fibrocell and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

Under the existing collaboration, UCLA researchers have used Fibrocell's technology to discover rare stem cells and cell types with regenerative properties within adult human skin.

The new license agreement allows for the continuation of this collaboration and for the development of future clinical research programs that could lead to new personalized therapies or diagnostic tools for multiple diseases/conditions.

The agreement pertains to research led by James Byrne, an assistant professor in UCLA's department of molecular and medical pharmacology. Byrne's recent research was related to two subtypes of cells: SSEA3-expressing regeneration-associated cells, which could play a role in the regeneration of human tissue in response to injury, and adult mesenchymal stem cells, which are being investigated for their ability to differentiate into cells that can form bone, fat and cartilage.

"Finding these specialized cells within skin cell cultures is important because rather than undergoing a surgical organ or tissue transplantation to replace diseased or destroyed tissue, patients may one day be able to benefit from procedures by which stem cells are extracted from their skin, differentiated into specific cell types and reimplanted into their bodies to exert a therapeutic effect," Fibrocell and UCLA said.

Fibrocell also signed a sponsored research agreement with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to advance the research that is currently under way at UCLA. Under this agreement, MIT researchers will investigate ways to maintain the same subpopulations of dermal cells, produce clinically meaningful quantities and deliver them to the body.

Both agreements went into effect on May 3. The license agreement with UCLA is in effect until the last licensed patent expires, unless terminated earlier, while the MIT agreement is in effect until June 30, 2015, unless extended.

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