Menstrual Blood Stem Cells May Significantly Increase Yield of Cord Blood Stem Cells
Cryo-Cell Presents Study at International Society of Cellular Therapy (ISCT) Demonstrating Potential to Expand Cord Blood Stem Cells for Possible Utilization in Transplantation
OLDSMAR, Fla., May 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Cryo-Cell International, Inc. announced results of a new study showing that adding menstrual blood stem cells (MenSCs) to stem cells from umbilical cord blood expands the number of progenitor cells (cells that grow into mature blood cells). This expansion technique could broaden the therapeutic use of the cells and provide a more readily available supply of stem cells for transplantation. These data will be presented today at the International Society of Cellular Therapy's Annual Meeting in San Diego, Calif.
Stem cells found in cord blood have been proven to treat more than 70 life-threatening illnesses, including leukemia, neuroblastoma, lymphoma and sickle cell anemia. Since the first successful cord blood stem cell transplant in 1988, cord blood stem cells have been used in more than 10,000 transplants worldwide. Cord blood stem cells are readily available, and are easy to collect and cryopreserve. Umbilical cord blood, however, can only be collected at birth and does not yield a sufficient number of stem cells typically required for transplantation - a single cord blood collection yields only enough stem cells for a child or smaller adult. Given these limitations, research has increasingly focused on identifying ways to expand or enhance cord blood stem cells.
The studies were performed by using harvested cells from menstrual blood and cord blood cells collected after childbirth and processed to reduce the number of red blood cells. MenSC samples were obtained using a menstrual cup and were transferred to a laboratory for processing and cryopreservation. Culture results demonstrated a significant increase in the functional capacity of the cord blood stem cells with the addition of MenSCs.
"Identifying strategies to expand the yield of cord-blood derived stem cells has been an ongoing challenge," said Julie Allickson, Ph.D., study investigator and Vice President, Laboratory Operations, Research and Development at Cryo-Cell International, Inc. "Further study will confirm whether MenSCs may be a potential solution to more readily available stem cell sources."
"We are clearly encouraged by this research showing the potential for MenSCs to boost the yield of cord blood stem cells - a major advance with important possible implications to the life-saving benefits of cord blood stem cells which may be significantly increased by utilization of this novel cell expansion technology," said Mercedes Walton, Cryo-Cell's Chairman and CEO. "We continue to make significant progress in advancing Cryo-Cell's robust intellectual property portfolio which includes these newly released findings and other groundbreaking research related to the therapeutic potential of menstrual stem cells."
Menstrual Stem Cells in PLoS Medicine
MenSCs offer a non-controversial and renewable stem cell source that can be collected non-invasively from what is conventionally regarded as biological waste. Cryo-Cell discovered and identified the benefits of stem cells harvested from menstrual blood described in a study published in the April 2008 Cell Transplantation demonstrating that MenSCs have the capability to differentiate into important cells, such as such as bone, cartilage, fat, nerve and cardiogenic cells. Based upon these early findings, researchers believe that MenSCs may potentially be utilized with cell-based therapies in the future to treat serious conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke; and possibly other neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. MenSCs may also potentially be utilized with customized anti-aging, wound-healing or sports medicine therapies.
On November 1, 2007, Cryo-Cell introduced the proprietary new service Celle(SM) based on the Company's expansive IP technology portfolio. This is the first and only service that empowers women to collect and cryopreserve menstrual flow containing undifferentiated adult stem cells for future utilization by the donor or possibly first-degree relatives in a manner similar to umbilical cord blood stem cells. Based on the continued success of MenSCs in the research setting, Cryo-Cell is actively expanding its portfolio of research collaborations with world renowned scientists committed to study this novel stem cell population for a broad range of regenerative therapeutic development. Further information about MenSCs and the ground-breaking service is available on the website at www.Celle.com.
About Cryo-Cell International, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: CCEL)
Based in Oldsmar, Florida, with over 175,000 clients worldwide, Cryo-Cell is one of the largest and most established family cord blood banks. ISO 9001:2000 certified and accredited by the AABB, Cryo-Cell operates in a state-of-the-art Good Manufacturing Practice and Good Tissue Practice (cGMP/cGTP)-compliant facility. Cryo-Cell is a publicly traded company. OTC Bulletin Board Symbol: CCEL. For more information, please call 1-800-STOR-CELL (1-800-786-7235) or visit www.cryo-cell.com.
Statements wherein the terms "believes", "intends", "projects" or "expects" as used are intended to reflect "forward-looking statements" of the Company. The information contained herein is subject to various risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the results anticipated in such forward-looking statements or paragraphs, many of which are outside the control of the Company. These uncertainties and other factors include the uncertainty of market acceptance of any potential service offerings relating to types of stem cells other than cord blood stem cells, including the Celle service, given that menstrual stem cells and other new stem cells have not yet been used in human therapies, and treatment applications using such stem cells are not likely to be developed and commercialized for many years and are subject to further research and development; the need for additional development and testing before determining the ultimate commercial value of the Company's intellectual property relating to the menstrual stem cells; the need to complete certain developments, including completion of clinical validation and testing, before any new process other than Celle can be commercialized, and the Company's development of its final business and economic model in offering any such service; any adverse effect or limitations caused by recent increases in government regulation of stem cell storage facilities; any increased competition in our business; any decrease or slowdown in the number of people seeking to store umbilical cord blood stem cells or decrease in the number of people paying annual storage fees; any adverse impacts on our revenue or operating margins due to the costs associated with increased growth in our business, including the possibility of unanticipated costs relating to the operation of our new facility; any technological breakthrough or medical breakthrough that would render the Company's business of stem cell preservation obsolete; any material failure or malfunction in our storage facilities; any natural disaster such as a tornado, other disaster (fire) or act of terrorism that adversely affects stored specimens; the costs associated with defending or prosecuting litigation matters and any material adverse result from such matters; decreases in asset valuations; any continued negative effect from adverse publicity in the past year regarding the Company's business operations; any negative consequences resulting from deriving, shipping and storing specimens at a second location; and other risks and uncertainties. The foregoing list is not exhaustive, and the Company disclaims any obligations to subsequently revise any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of such statements. Readers should carefully review the risk factors described in other documents the Company files from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the most recent Annual Report on Form 10-KSB, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-QSB and any Current Reports on Form 8-K filed by the Company.
Contact: General Media Inquiries Tara Weintraub 312-240-2861 Tara.firstname.lastname@example.org Financial Media Inquiries Gayatri Narayanan 212-704-4577 Gayatri.email@example.com
SOURCE Cryo-Cell International, Inc.
Released May 5, 2009