Pluripotent stem cells can be used to produce virtually any therapeutic cell type, and they are destined to become the starting material for hundreds of clinical trials in dozens of indications over the next decade. Universal Cells hopes to play a major role in this transformation of modern medicine, by providing the highest quality Universal Donor PSCs for both our internal programs and our partners. We encourage and actively seek out academic and corporate partnerships to maximize the value of our Universal Donor Cell platform to patients all over the world. Some of these partnerships are described below.
Astellas Pharma Inc
Our parent company Astellas Pharma Inc has extensive resources that are available to us for product development, regulatory issues, and conducting clinical trials. Astellas is a leader in PSC-based cell therapy and has acquired multiple biotech companies operating in this space.
Universal Cells collaborates with Xyphos, an Astellas company, to bring their convertible CAR technology into UDC-derived products. Xyphos was acquired by Astellas in 2019 as part of their overall cell therapy strategy.
Blue Rock Therapeutics
Blue Rock entered into a collaboration with Universal Cells in 2017 to create engineered iPSC lines. Blue Rock is a cell therapy company focused on neurology, cardiology and immunology.
Astellas Institute of Regenerative Medicine (IRM)
We work closely with IRM in Westborough, Massachusetts to develop Universal Donor Cell products for multiple indications, and have access to GMP manufacturing facilities there.
Adaptimmune has partnered with Universal Cells since 2015 to develop T cell products from PSCs. Astellas and Adaptimmune extended this collaboration in 2020 to include co-development of PSC-derived CAR-T and TCR therapies.
Cristina Nostro, Senior Scientist at the McEwen Stem Cell Institute within the University Health Network, Canada’s largest research hospital, is collaborating with Universal Cells to generate pancreatic beta cells derived from universal donor cells for the treatment of diabetes.