Scientists at a symposium in Herzliya, Israel have identified StemEx, a stem cell product derived from part of the umbilical cord as an exciting new treatment for leukaemia and lymphoma.
Scientists believe that preliminary evidence has shown that StemEx could potentially generate better results than bone marrow transplantation in the long run, providing an alternative treatment for leukaemia and lymphoma.
StemEx, developed by a joint venture of Gamida Cell and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, is a graft of an expanded population of stem/progenitor cells derived from umbilical cord blood and transplanted intravenously along with the remaining unit of non-manipulated cells.
Hospital Universitario, Valencia head of bone marrow transplantation professor Sanz said that the problem is that in the case of a bone marrow transplant, it takes too much time from transplant to engraftment.
"We think that StemEx will likely result in a shorter time to engraftment and even potentially generate better results than bone marrow transplantation in the long run," Sanz said.
StemEx has been proven in animal models and is being evaluated in an international Phase II/III ExCell study involving adolescents and adults with high-risk lymphoid and haematologic malignancies, at clinical sites in the US, Italy, Spain, Hungary and Israel.
The symposium, Umbilical Cord Blood: An Alternative for Bone Marrow Transplantation in Adults was sponsored by the Gamida Cell-Teva joint venture.