OLDSMAR, Fla., April 14 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Cryo-Cell International, Inc. today announced results of a study published this month in Cell Transplantation showing that stem cells found in menstrual blood proliferate rapidly and have significant potential to develop into multiple cell types. Menstrual stem cells offer an easily accessible, non-controversial and renewable stem cell source, and these findings could mean these cells have the potential to one day treat a host of diseases.
The study, "Multipotent Menstrual Blood Stromal Stem Cells: Isolation, Characterization and Differentiation," was conducted by researchers at Cryo- Cell International who originally discovered the stem cells. According to the study, the stem cells in menstrual blood, known as MenSCs, are stromal stem cells, meaning they have the capability to differentiate into important cells, such as such as bone, cartilage, fat, nerve and cardiogenic cells. The study also found that the cells divided rapidly and plentifully, indicating a possible therapeutic value.
With additional studies of the cells in a variety of categories, the use of these cells may lead to treatments for a number of serious diseases, such as osteoporosis, stroke, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. The cells may even one day be used for customized anti-aging or sports medicine treatments.
"These findings demonstrate that this novel cell population is adequately potent to one day be a routinely and safely isolated source of stem cells," said Julie Allickson, Ph.D., study investigator and Vice President, Laboratory Operations, Research and Development at Cryo-Cell International, Inc. "Clinical trials are now underway to test the safety and efficacy of MenSCs in animal models for diabetes, neurodegenerative and cardiovascular regenerative therapies."
"As we research several sources of stem cells for their potential therapeutic benefits, we look for cells to emulate embryonic stem cells in that they have the ability to grow rapidly and to become many different types of cells," said Dr. Camillo Ricordi, director of the Cell Transplant Center and the Diabetes Research Institute at the University of Miami. "These menstrual stem cells could have several of the embryonic stem cell attributes, in addition to being easily extracted, not controversial and renewable."
During the study, the investigators analyzed shed menstrual blood and tissue to identify MenSCs. The samples were obtained using a menstrual cup and transferred to a laboratory for processing. At the lab, the cells were quality control-tested and grown in culture to allow for expansion and to assess their growth capabilities. Further analyses were conducted to assess the cells' ability to differentiate into new cell lines, in order to determine which diseases the cells may be used to treat. The average cell collection from a sample of menstrual blood was approximately five million, of which 75 percent of the cells were considered viable. Importantly, the cells rapidly expanded at a doubling rate of 24-36 hours, starting with 50,000 cells on day one and culminating into 48 million cells in less than one month.
"This promising study is the first of many we are conducting in collaboration with leading researchers and institutions with the ultimate goal of using these stem cells to develop groundbreaking future treatments," said Mercedes Walton, Cryo-Cell's Chairman and CEO. "These initial findings offer scientific support and validation for women who are interested in preserving their own menstrual blood stem cells for potential future benefit."
Based on the results of the study, Cryo-Cell is pursuing further research into menstrual stem cells. Cryo-Cell is organizing a number of research and development agreements in efforts to develop promising regenerative therapies utilizing C'elle technology in cardiology, diabetes and neurological diseases. Results from these studies are expected in the next year. The Company is actively seeking to expand its portfolio of research collaborations with scientists worldwide interested in studying this novel stem cell population for regenerative therapeutic development. Cryo-Cell's C'elle(SM) service, which was introduced in November, 2007, is the first available product that enables women to collect menstrual flow containing stem cells, which can then be cryogenically preserved in a manner similar to stem cells from umbilical cord blood.
About Cryo-Cell International, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: CCEL.OB)
Based in Oldsmar, Florida, with over 150,000 clients worldwide, Cryo-Cell is one of the largest and most established family cord blood banks. ISO 9001: 2000 certified and accredited by the AABB, Cryo-Cell operates in a state-of- the-art Good Manufacturing Practice and Good Tissue Practice (cGMP/cGTP)- compliant facility. Cryo-Cell is a publicly traded company. OTC Bulletin Board Symbol: CCEL. For more information, please call 1-800-STOR-CELL (1-800- 786-7235) or visit http://www.cryo-cell.com.
Statements wherein the terms "believes", "intends", "projects" or "expects" as used are intended to reflect "forward-looking statements" of the Company. The information contained herein is subject to various risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the results anticipated in such forward-looking statements or paragraphs, many of which are outside the control of the Company. These uncertainties and other factors include the uncertainty of market acceptance of any potential service offerings relating to types of stem cells other than cord blood stem cells, including the C'elle service, given that menstrual stem cells and other new stem cells have not yet been used in human therapies, and treatment applications using such stem cells are not likely to be developed and commercialized for many years and are subject to further research and development; the need for additional development and testing before determining the ultimate commercial value of the Company's intellectual property relating to the menstrual stem cells; the need to complete certain developments, including completion of clinical validation and testing, before any new process other than C'elle can be commercialized, and the Company's development of its final business and economic model in offering any such service; any adverse effect or limitations caused by recent increases in government regulation of stem cell storage facilities; any increased competition in our business; any decrease or slowdown in the number of people seeking to store umbilical cord blood stem cells or decrease in the number of people paying annual storage fees; any adverse impacts on our revenue or operating margins due to the costs associated with increased growth in our business, including the possibility of unanticipated costs relating to the operation of our new facility; any technological breakthrough or medical breakthrough that would render the Company's business of stem cell preservation obsolete; any material failure or malfunction in our storage facilities; any natural disaster such as a tornado, other disaster (fire) or act of terrorism that adversely affects stored specimens; the costs associated with defending or prosecuting litigation matters and any material adverse result from such matters; decreases in asset valuations; any continued negative effect from adverse publicity in the past year regarding the Company's business operations; any negative consequences resulting from deriving, shipping and storing specimens at a second location; and other risks and uncertainties. The foregoing list is not exhaustive, and the Company disclaims any obligations to subsequently revise any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of such statements. Readers should carefully review the risk factors described in other documents the Company files from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the most recent Annual Report on Form 10-KSB, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-QSB and any Current Reports on Form 8-K filed by the Company.
SOURCE Cryo-Cell International, Inc.