BioTime, Inc. (NYSE Mkt: BTX) is a biotechnology company focused on the emerging field of regenerative medicine. The company’s core technologies center on pluripotent stem cells that are capable of becoming all of the cell types in the human body. Products made from these stem cells are being developed by our subsidiaries, each of which concentrates on different medical specialties, including: neuroscience, oncology, orthopedics, and blood and vascular diseases. BioTime’s commercial strategy targets near-term yet strategic commercial opportunities such as: Renevia (a product currently in clinical trials in Europe to facilitate cell transplantation); ReGlyde and Premvia for tendon and dermatological applications; PanC-Dx (a family of novel blood-based cancer screens); the current line of research products including PureStem cell lines, associated ESpan culture media, and GMP-capable human embryonic stem cell lines; and the LifeMap Database Suite. Cellular therapeutics in development include: OpRegen (hESC-derived RPE cells for the treatment of macular degeneration); OPC1 (hESC-derived oligodendrocyte progenitors for spinal cord injury); and VAC1 (a dendritic cell-based vaccine for cancer based on the telomerase antigen). SNNLive spoke with Dr. Michael West, CEO of BioTime, Inc. at the LD Micro “Main Event” 2014 in Bel Air, CA.
Dr. West begins with an overview of the company, “BioTime is a biotech company targeting novel therapeutics using what we’ve all heard about the stem cell revolution, some people call it regenerative medicine, it’s a very simple idea. The idea is that we’re made of cells and medicine has never had the ability, it’s kind of amazing, up until now to simply replace living cells where they’re lost usually from aging and age-related disease. So you have a heart attack, you know and you’ve lost heart muscle, your heart can’t regenerate it on its own, there’s no drug that can do this, there’s no antibody that can do this. We now have the ability with these all-powerful stem cells to manufacture on an industrial scale, all of the cells of the human body."
He discusses what developments BioTime is currently focused on, “We’re focused on three therapeutic programs which we think are near-term applications for this. One is for spinal cord injury, the first product ever made…The spinal cord cannot regenerate itself, it’s more than that – stroke, stroke is a similar injury in the brain and so we’re targeting cells for that. It’s called OBC 1, FDA is very excited about it and has allowed us to move into this study in the neck, you know where most injuries occur, that work is underway right now and then we’re doing a cancer vaccine using these stem cells, a broad spectrum cancer vaccine.”
He explains, “What we did at BioTime since we were consolidating all these assets just in recent times, we looked for some near-term products because investors have increasingly collapsed their patience with investment in public companies and as you pointed out, we’re a public company, and so we brought into the, part of this mix, some near-term products. We have cancer diagnostics which are about a year away from commercialization and a matrix that glue these cells in place that is in a pivotal trial outside the US and so should be on the market in about a year.” For more information, check out their website: www.BioTimeInc.com
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