Cell therapy focused biotech NeoStem (NYSE:NBS) appeared in Bloomberg Television’s "Talking Stock" this week, where CEO Robin Smith discussed the company’s latest stem cell therapy trial.
On May 14, Smith spoke with Pimm Fox, host of
"Taking Stock", about the company's PreSERVE trial, a regenerative
therapy for heart attack survivors.
PreSERVE said it uses an
autologous bone marrow-derived stem cell called CD34, to limit the
damage of heart muscle that develops following an acute heart attack and
prevent ventricular remodeling, which is the accepted mechanism
responsible for clinical progression and increased risk.
Smith explained that there are two basic types of stem cells, embryonic and non-embryonic – which are what NeoStem uses in its therapies.
stem cells – non-embryonic – can come from an umbilical cord or a
placenta, or even from a grown person’s fat or bone marrow, said Smith.
are a leader in cell therapy, creating all kinds of cell therapies from
different non-embryonic stem cells to treat chronic disease," Smith
"For 30 years, we have done bone marrow transplants –
taking stem cells from another person and giving them top you after
chemotherapy to create a new immune system.
"Now we’re talking about using the cells to repair tissue and those could come from another person, or your own."
regards to the phase 2 clinical trials of PreSERVE, Smith says one in
five people that actually survive a heat attach die within a year’s
"So imagine if you could take your body’s stem cells and
inject them into the heart to lay down new blood vessels, to repair the
damaged tissue, and prevent worsening of heart functions," Smith said.
"That’s what we’re doing with PreSERVE."
Smith says the company plans to have results from the trial in 2013.
To fund this, and other projects, Smith says NeoStem is involved in contract manufacturing for other companies as well as developing their own products to treat chronic diseases.
"To generate money, NeoStem
relies on a profitable interest in a generic pharmaceutical company [in
China], and we believe we’ll be able to monetize that to invest in
these stem cell therapies where we think there will be a great return
for our investors," Smith said.
The company has a 51 percent
ownership interest Chinese generic pharmaceutical manufacturing company
Suzhou Erye Pharmaceutical, and is looking to sell its stake in Suzhou
to bolster its cell therapy business.
NeoStem also has a manufacturing side to its business.
a service business where we’re helping other clients develop cell
therapies, commercialize them and manufacture them as they continue to
grow and go through their clinical trials," said Smith.
NeoStem said it has worked with many companies, including Baxter International (NYSE:BAX), to manufacture cell therapies.
The company released its first quarter results earlier this week, saying it had increased revenues by 13 per cent.
rose to $22.1 million from $19.6 million while the underlying loss for
the three months to March was $2.7 million, excluding non-cash charges.
Total net losses were US$9.2 million (US$9.7 million).
Amorcyte, which NeoStem
acquired in October 2011, is developing a cell therapy, AMR-001, for
the treatment of cardiovascular disease that aims to prevent heart
tissue damage following a heart attack. AMR-001 is currently in phase II
NeoStem also has a network of stem cell therapeutic providers in China.
The company raised $6.8 million gross through a share placing in April.