Industry updates with Dusko Ilic: May 2020

Written by Dusko ILIC

Read highlights from the latest installment of Dusko Ilic’s industry news, which discuss the latest developments and news in regenerative medicine and stem cell research, and are published every month in Regenerative Medicine.

Every month, Dusko comments on regenerative medicine industry news of note. Read the full update for May 2020 in Regenerative Medicine here>>

Find previous updates here>>

What happened this month that you were expecting?

The trend of mesenchymal stromal/stem cells (MSC) companies shifting priorities and jumping on COVID band wagon continued. Even Cynata (Australia) is going after it with their induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived Cymerus™ MSCs. In May, US FDA also gave the green light to Pluristem (Israel), NantKwest (CA, USA) and RESTEM (CA, USA).

What happened that surprised you this month?

Kudos to Fate Therapeutics (CA, USA): US FDA has cleared the first Investigational New Drug (IND) application for FT538, the first CRISPR-edited, iPSC-derived cell therapy. FT538 is an off-the-shelf natural killer (NK) cell cancer immunotherapy that is derived from a clonal master iPSC line engineered with three functional components to enhance innate immunity. FT538 is the fourth off-the-shelf, iPSC-derived NK cell product candidate from the company’s proprietary iPSC product platform cleared for clinical investigation by the FDA.

If we only read about one story this month, what should it be?

This story comes from academia, not industry, but it is worthy of our attention. The New England Journal of Medicine has reported 24-month follow up data from a patient with idiopathic Parkinson’s disease that has been implanted with autologous iPSC-derived midbrain dopaminergic progenitor cells. Clinical symptoms of Parkinson’s disease stabilized or improved at 18-24 months after implantation.

Read the full industry update for May 2020>>

Dr Dusko Ilic

Dusko Ilic is a Senior Lecturer in stem cell science, coordinator of the cross-divisional postgraduate program in stem cells and regenerative medicine, and Head of the Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Core Facility at King’s College London (London, UK). He is also Head of the Assisted Conception Unit’s Human Embryonic Laboratories at Guy’s Hospital (London, UK). He is also a member of the editorial board of the journal Regenerative Medicine, where he writes the Industry Report, a regular feature compiling information from non-academic institutions in the field of stem cells and regenerative medicine.