Professor Tim O’Brien
REMEDI, The Regenerative Medicine Institute at NUI Galway and Orbsen Therapeutics have entered into an agreement with Cardium Therapeutics to utilise Cardium’s Excellagen® pharmaceutically-formulated gel as a delivery agent for Orbsen Therapeutics’ proprietary stromal cell therapy in pre-clinical studies for the potential treatment of diabetic foot ulcers.
Excellagen is a syringe-based, professional-use, pharmaceutically-formulated 2.6% fibrillar Type I bovine collagen homogenate that functions as an acellular biological modulator to activate the wound healing process and significantly accelerate the growth of granulation tissue.
The research is being conducted by REMEDI at NUI Galway, a world-class biomedical research centre established with funding from Science Foundation Ireland and focused on mesenchymal stromal cell (MSC) research. The research initiative (EU REDDSTAR) is funded under the European Union Framework 7 (EU FP7) research programme focused on treating diabetes and its complications with a defined MSC therapy and enlisting academic and industry partners throughout Europe in the program (www.reddstar.eu).
Diabetes is a chronic condition associated with significant morbidity and mortality. About 90% of all diabetes is type 2. In Ireland the number of people with type 2 diabetes is growing as a result of an ageing population and rising obesity rates. The Diabetes Federation of Ireland estimated that 200,000 people had diabetes in Ireland in 2003 and a further 200,000 had the condition but were unaware of it. They also estimated that a further 250,000 had pre-diabetes and 50% would develop diabetes in the ensuing five years if lifestyle changes were not met.
Professor Tim O’Brien, Director of REMEDI, NUI Galway said “Diabetic foot ulceration is a frequent cause of amputation in patients with diabetes mellitus. New treatments are urgently required and we have shown that mesenchymal stem cells have the potential to promote healing.”
He added “one of the challenges with this approach is how to deliver the cells to the surface of the wound and Orbsen and REMEDI have partnered with Cardium Therapeutics to study the use of their biomaterial to deliver the Orbsen cells to the surface of the wound.”
Orbsen Therapeutics, a spin out company of REMEDI, has received funding from the EU to explore the use of a proprietary stem cell product to treat diabetic foot ulcers.
REMEDI is a world-class biomedical research centre focusing on gene therapy and stem cell research. Based in NUI Galway, REMEDI was established in 2004 through a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Centre for Science Engineering and Technology (CSET) award, and industry funding. More information is available at http://www.nuigalway.ie/remedi/about-us.
Cardium is an asset-based health sciences and regenerative medicine company focused on the acquisition and strategic development of innovative products and businesses with the potential to address significant unmet medical needs and having definable pathways to commercialisation, partnering or other economic monetisations. The Company’s lead commercial product, Excellagen® topical gel for wound care management, has received FDA clearance for marketing and sale in the United States.
Further information is available at http://www.excellagen.com
Author: Marketing and Communications Office, NUI Galway