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CyThera Inc.

Division of Novocell Inc./CyThera Inc.
www.cytheraco.com

Latest From CyThera Inc.

ReNeuron: Going Private

VCs don't usually buy back portfolio companies once they've floated. But Merlin's offer to take struggling stem-cell group ReNeuron back into the private realm gives shareholders a slightly less unattractive deal than liquidation, even though the group is still valued below cash. More importantly, it gives ReNeuron another shot.
BioPharmaceutical Europe

Stem Cell Technologies: Entering the Next Generation of Cellular Therapies

With use of embryonic stem cells problematic because of ethical and technical issues, the competitive landscape in cell therapy is being shaped by the adult stem cell opportunity. The firms profiled in this issue are taking a variety of approaches. NeuroNova has shown that neural stem cells transplanted into mouse blastocysts could differentiate into heart, liver, and intestinal cells, and is using its stem cells as a drug discovery tool to identify a broader range of factors affecting cell differentiation in the brain it can potentially turn into drugs. Stem Cell Pharmaceuticals wants to build a franchise around TGF-alpha, which causes adult stem cells to proliferate, induces migration of new cells, and allows their subsequent differentiation into fully functional tissue. StemCo Biomedical has developed a way to measure intracellular activity of aldehyde dehydrogenase, an enzyme highly expressed in stem cells, as a marker for isolating the cells and separating them out. StemSource Inc. has created a stem cell bank for individuals to store their own stem cells, which the company isolates from adipose (fat) tissue, for future use.
BioPharmaceutical Platform Technologies

Redefining the Stem Cell Opportunity

Small companies are now trying to leverage the value of both embryonic stem cells and adult stem cells, as genomics tools and for toxicology screening. At the same time, stem cells are gradually making their way into human testing, leading to an even more urgent need to understand the role that cytokines and growth factors play in signaling cells to differentiate. In fact, there's a growing recognition that the ultimate pharma opportunity may lie in selling drug cocktails that control cell differentiation, not in making and selling cells. Because dormant adult stem cells reside in tissues and in circulation, researchers are even beginning to envision applications where transplanted replacement cells are not needed at all.
BioPharmaceutical Manufacturing

Rewriting Fate: The Stem Cell Transplant Business

Physicians, patients, and companies can now see the stem cell transplant business taking shape. Stem cell trials are finally in progress, allowing investors and corporate partners to finally see just how effective this multi-billion-dollar opportunity to replace many highly problematic organ transplants, and dramatically expand the procedures into new areas, can be. Beyond the lack of clinical conformation, stem cell transplantation therapy has been held back by the inability to culture large quantities of cells--as with whole organ transplants, there simply isn't enough tissue to go around. For the most part, companies have had to propose autologous transplantation strategies or, at best, transplants from one donor for just a few patients--an economically difficult-to-justify business. Geron, the only player in this group to have benefited from the last nine months of biotech stock mania, holds a key competitive advantage: its ability to use embryonic stem cells (ESCs) to create, theoretically, nearly infinite quantities of any cell in the body. But recent developments have stirred the competitive pot: a number of companies have created methods for growing enough adult stem cells to provide them to significant numbers of patients. Meanwhile, researchers have transformed fully committed adult stem cells into cells of different lineages, raising the possibility that alternatives to ESCs for tissue replacement or repair exist. The transplant replacement business--regenerative medicine--has caught the public's attention. Nonetheless, the stem cell industry has remained a start-up's trade, and it's easy to see why: large-company experiences in the area have not, for the most part, been happy ones, as companies face the issues of installing unpharma-like infrastructures to deliver personalized therapy, as well as ethical concerns, which must be given appropriate consideration. But these and other hurdles shouldn't obscure the growing opportunity. Stem cell therapy, so long a therapeutic chimera, now seems ripe for commercial exploitation.
BioPharmaceutical Platform Technologies
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Company Information

  • Industry
  • Biotechnology
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Therapeutic Areas
  • Non-Specific
  • Alias(es)
  • Ownership
  • Private
  • Headquarters
  • Worldwide
    • North America
      • USA
  • Parent & Subsidiaries
  • Novocell Inc.
  • Senior Management
  • Michael J Ross, CEO
    Lutz Giebel, COO
    Edward Baetge, CSO
  • Contact Info
  • CyThera Inc.
    Phone: (858) 455-3708
    3550 General Atomics Court, Bldg. 2
    San Diego, CA 92121
    USA
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