As a physician it has always been my goal to help patients, but, as the CEO of an emerging biotechnology company as pioneering as NeoStem, I know I can achieve even more. NeoStem has the potential to radically change the face of how diseases are treated, leading to longer and, more importantly, higher quality lives. We do this by taking part in the paradigm shift we believe is underway towards cell therapy– a shift away from treating disease with drugs and towards treating disease with our own cells; a shift away from treating symptoms and towards cures for the illnesses that cause the most suffering; a shift away from chemical drug development and towards looking inside ourselves to understand and then amplify our body’s natural repair mechanisms. NeoStem is not the only company on this track (analysts estimate that the worldwide regenerative medicine market will grow from approximately $0.82 billion in 2010 to reach almost $9 billion in 20211), but I feel we are uniquely positioned to capture the value of this market and become a leading player. Let me explain why.
NeoStem endeavors to be an integrative force in the cell therapy industry. By vertically integrating the collection, storage and processing of cell units and the development, manufacturing, distribution, and delivery of cell therapy products, we are positioned to take advantage of growth in the cell therapy industry as a whole.
We are developing an active portfolio of product candidate assets based on a diverse array of technology platforms, including:
- Amorcyte: Autologous bone marrow-derived adult stem cells targeting the substantial market of cardiovascular treatment (100% NeoStem owned)
- Athelos: T-cell therapeutic targeting autoimmune conditions (80% NeoStem owned)
- VSELTM Technology: Pluripotent adult stem cells that can regenerate tissues and potentially treat conditions ranging from macular degeneration to liver regeneration to osteoporosis (exclusive worldwide license)
NeoStem acquired Progenitor Cell Therapy (PCT) in an effort to bring additional cell therapy expertise in house and to develop a “one-stop-shop” global network of cell therapy. It is a significant step toward NeoStem's goal of becoming a leader in the fast-growing cell therapy industry, generating revenues, and developing and licensing therapies to be used both in the United States and abroad.
PCT has provided services to over 100 clients in its 12-year history, and is the only contract manufacturing organization to have worked with a client’s product (Dendreon, Inc.’s Provenge) through all of the phases of clinical trials and ultimately to FDA approval. PCT offers its clients and NeoStem cell processing and development capabilities on both the East and West Coasts of the U.S. Through the addition of our Beijing, China facility, we could span two continents. PCT is built on a strong foundation of services that cater to the industry as a whole, reducing our reliance on the success of our own varied technology platforms in that we still have the opportunity to capture growing revenues from industry growth. Furthermore, PCT’s manufacturing revenues would increase significantly should a client progress through Phase I, II, and III trials and into commercialization where larger numbers of cells are needed.
We will continue to be on the lookout for valuable cell therapeutic assets through opportunities that may arise from PCT’s client pipeline where we can contribute to cGMP manufacturing and proceed through clinical trials. There are many vehicles for offering this assistance, including acquisition, licensing, and providing manufacturing and services via PCT in exchange for equity.
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