Ocata receives SBIR grant to develop HMC therapy for lupus nephritis
Posted: 24 August 2015 | Victoria White
Ocata has been awarded a SBIR Phase 1 grant to fund further preclinical development of Ocata’s proprietary Hemangio-derived Mesenchymal Cell (HMC) product…
Ocata Therapeutics has been awarded a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase 1 grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) to fund further preclinical development of Ocata’s proprietary Hemangio-derived Mesenchymal Cell (HMC™) product for the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and lupus nephritis (LN).
“Ocata has demonstrated potential therapeutic activity of a pluripotent stem cell-derived product for the treatment of autoimmune diseases such as lupus nephritis and Crohn’s disease,” said Robert Lanza, M.D., Chief Scientific Officer at Ocata, and Principle Investigator of the grant. “Our studies in highly regarded preclinical models of lupus nephritis provided proof of concept that our HMC’s increased the lifespan of the lupus-prone mice and inhibited the progression of otherwise fatal glomerulonephritis.”
HMC product shown to have immune-modulatory and anti-inflammatory
Systematic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a systemic autoimmune disease that presents significant disease management challenges, as there is currently no known cure. While treatment to relieve symptoms is sometimes available for patients with mild to moderate SLE, a subset of SLE patients resist all forms of current interventions and develop LN, a severe and debilitating disease. The HMC product developed by Ocata has shown to have immune-modulatory and anti-inflammatory activity to help treat these diseases.
“This grant from the NIH, a preeminent research agency, recognises the promise of our HMC product as a potential new treatment for disabling autoimmune diseases like lupus nephritis, where there is no cure available today,” said LeRoux Jooste, Chief Commercial Officer and SVP Business Development. “Our preclinical research and patent estate firmly anchors our leading position in the development of our novel Restorative Immunology™ platform and expands Ocata’s potential to partner the non-ophthalmic uses of its technology for the treatment of devastating autoimmune diseases.”
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), Ocata Therapeutics