Cryo-Cell Launches C'elle, First-Ever Proprietary Menstrual Stem Cell Service
Company's Newly Discovered Stem Cell Shows Promising Potential in Regenerative Medicine
OLDSMAR, Fla., Nov. 1 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Cryo-Cell International Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: CCEL) ("Cryo-Cell" or the "Company"), one of the largest and most established family cord blood banks, today announced its discovery of breakthrough stem cell technology and its launch of the world's first-ever service provided for women to store their own menstrual stem cells. The new service, called C'elle(SM) (pronounced "C-L"), enables women to collect menstrual flow containing stem cells, which can be cryogenically preserved in a manner similar to stem cells from umbilical cord blood and may one day serve as a potential source for promising regenerative therapies to treat heart disease, diabetes, neurological disorders like spinal cord injury, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases, in addition to cosmeceutical applications such as anti-aging therapies, to name a few. However, realistically, it may take several years for these menstrual stem cells to be developed into potential widely-available commercial therapies. The C'elle service is based on Cryo-Cell's intellectual property, for which patent applications are pending, related to the procurement, processing, isolation and cryo-preservation of these unique menstrual stem cells.
The unique C'elle service is being offered following Cryo-Cell's discovery of new scientific evidence that menstrual flow, which results from the shedding of the uterine lining (endometrium) during menstruation, contains millions of stem cells that have many properties and characteristics similar to those of both bone marrow and embryonic stem cells. Dr. Amit N. Patel, Director of Cardiac Stem Cell Therapies at the McGowan Institute, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, along with other independent research laboratories, studied these menstrual stem cells, which have demonstrated the capability in vitro to differentiate into neural, cardiac, bone, cartilage, and adipose cells, and possibly other cell types. Dr. Patel's preliminary findings were presented on October 21, 2007 at TCT 2007, the annual scientific symposia of Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics, in a seminar entitled "Novel Cell Sources for Myocyte Repair and Replacement."
"This is the first discovery of such a multipotent, highly prolific and readily accessible source of stem cells -- even one menstrual cycle has the potential to produce millions of stem cells," said Dr. Stephen Noga, Director, Medical Oncology/Hematology, Alvin & Lois Lapidus Cancer Institute, and Director, Cellular Therapeutics Program, Sinai Hospital of Baltimore. "Stem cells isolated from menstrual blood may show significant promise for future use in clinical regenerative medical therapies. This brings us one step closer to tissue and organ regenerative approaches. They are adult stem cells, but they share some of the same features of embryonic stem cells in their ability to multiply rapidly and differentiate into other cell types of the body. Current research is very preliminary, but given their properties, we believe these menstrual stem cells demonstrate compelling promise to transform regenerative medicine in the coming years."
Dr. Gerald Elfenbein, a Professor of Medicine at Boston University, former director of the Cancer Center and Blood and Marrow Transplant Program at Roger Williams Medical Center, Providence, R.I., and former division chair of the Blood and Marrow Transplant Program at H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, Fla. believes the impact to the research and medical communities is significant. "I've been in the stem cell transplant world for more than three decades, and this finding follows in a long tradition of bench-to-bedside research," he said. "This discovery has the potential to offer significant benefit to the research community by accelerating the pace of study, and I look forward to seeing the possible clinical results we can achieve in the future."
The use of these unique menstrual stem cells in pre-clinical studies for human cardiovascular, diabetes and neurodegenerative regenerative therapies is under evaluation. Preliminary research related to the immunological profile of these unique menstrual stem cells suggests that in addition to the donor, these stem cells may also potentially be used to benefit other family members who are genetically related to the donor, such as perhaps a parent, sibling or child.
"Cryo-Cell's discovery of these unique menstrual stem cells and the processes associated with their procurement, processing, isolation and cryo-preservation, is an extraordinary milestone for the Company," stated Mercedes Walton, Cryo-Cell's Chairman and CEO. "We are very excited that our revolutionary new service, C'elle, based on the Company's proprietary technology, is now available to the public. Over the past year, Cryo-Cell has made significant progress in the study of these unique menstrual stem cells and commercialization of related processing services. The Company is pleased to collaborate with world-class researchers from many different fields of medicine to explore possible utilization of these stem cells in the development of potential breakthrough therapies that may possibly benefit millions of people in the future. In the months ahead, we eagerly anticipate emerging developments related to the Company's novel technology and innovative proprietary service."
Beginning today, the C'elle service is exclusively available from Cryo-Cell and may be used by any woman who menstruates. It is currently estimated, however, that over 100 million women in the U.S. alone experience menstrual cycles. The Company believes that the C'elle service offers women no matter what their age, with the unique opportunity to preserve "Your Monthly Miracle(SM)" while they are in good health and have access to this distinctive source of stem cells. With global advancements in stem cell research and development, the C'elle service offers a unique family healthcare asset that may potentially increase in value over time as breakthrough regenerative stem cell therapies emerge in the future. Detailed information about the C'elle service is available at www.celle.com.
About Cryo-Cell International Inc.
Based in Oldsmar, Florida, with over 140,000 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 C'elle 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 C'elle 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.
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SOURCE Cryo-Cell International Inc.
Released November 1, 2007