The Belgian biotech has signed a research partnership with US firm, Implant Therapeutics, to access induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSC) including hypoimmunogenic cell lines, differentiation protocols and expertise.
A cell therapy company addressing unmet medical needs in orthopedics and other diseases, Bone Therapeutics said the iPSC technology will allow for the development of next-generation cell therapy products as a key addition to its existing cell therapy platform.
The biotech’s core technology is based on its allogeneic cell and gene therapy platform with differentiated bone marrow sourced Mesenchymal Stromal Cells (MSCs) which can be stored at the point of use in the hospital. Currently in pre-clinical development, BT-20, the most recent product candidate from this technology, targets inflammatory conditions, while the leading investigational medicinal product, ALLOB, is said to represent a novel approach to bone regeneration, which turns undifferentiated stromal cells from healthy donors into bone-forming cells.
The company wants to utilize its expertise in broader clinical indications of high unmet medical need, and to achieve this strategic aim, it says it is now expanding its sources of MSCs from those derived from bone marrow and implementing genetic modification of MSCs to achieve higher therapeutic efficacy.
Hence the partnership with Implant Therapeutics.
“These specific single source MSCs are highly standardized, are expandable and scalable. They are also more flexible with regards to modification methodologies, including gene editing and transduction, than existing autologous and allogeneic approaches,” said the company.
Commenting, Tony Ting, CSO, Bone Therapeutics, said that to address further, life-threatening indications with high levels of mortality and a significant unmet medical need, it will be essential to genetically engineer MSCs. “This will give these cells the ammunition they need to tackle difficult diseases."
Early stage research focus
This specific agreement with Implant Therapeutics is set to last 12 months and is focused on achieving early-stage research and product design and testing, reported the parties.
Bone Therapeutics said it will, in parallel, continue to research and evaluate a number of genes that are of interest as well as genetic modification technologies and methodologies. This separate activity will be undertaken to enhance the functionality and efficacy of MSCs for specific indications.