It’s too important in human biology not to make a difference.
Boston, MA (PRWEB) March 02, 2016
As 2015 drew to a close, stem cell medicine biotechnology start-up company Asymmetrex began an effort to educate the pharmaceutical and regenerative medicine industries on the value of counting adult tissue stem cells. The company is now intensifying this effort with a newly developed free webinar and two scheduled conference presentations to clinical trial developers and the rapidly growing gene-editing therapeutics community.
“Although medicine, science, and technology professionals value innovation highly, they are also trained to be skeptical of it. Myself included. Skepticism runs particularly high when an innovation is not just a better mousetrap, but the first mousetrap. Getting people to try it is even more challenging, if catching mice was previously thought impossible; and might expose a house full of them.”
That’s how James Sherley, Director of Asymmetrex, says he thinks about the challenge his company now faces with gaining acceptance and adoption of its new AlphaSTEM technology for counting adult tissue stem cells. For more than a half century, since its beginnings, the field of stem cell biology has had no method available for counting adult tissue stem cells, though not for lack of trying. However, with the best-described biomarkers found to lack the degree of specificity required for use in counting, stem cell biology and the related translational field of regeneration medicine pretty much gave up on the quest. These fields have been trying to get along without it, in many cases in a state of denial about the negative consequences of trying to do so.
Sherley calls adult tissue stem cell counting “a hidden unmet need” in stem cell research and many related biomedical fields, including drug development, stem cell transplantation medicine, regenerative medicine clinical investigation, gene therapy, and the newly emerging field of gene-editing therapeutics. To provide increased education on these understated or unrecognized deficiencies, starting in January of this year, Asymmetrex has sponsored bi-weekly blogs on the regenerative medicine professionals’ social media network RegMedNet. For example, the blogs highlight fundamental deficiencies in ongoing regenerative medicine trials in which the stem cell number in transplanted treatment preparations is unknown. Without knowing stem cell number, and thereby stem cell dose, how can outcomes be interpreted from one trial to the next?
Asymmetrex is now marketing its AlphaSTEM technology as the long-needed solution to the stem cell counting and stem cell dosing problems. The company is focused on developing interest among executives in pharmaceutical companies, regenerative medicine companies, and gene-editing therapeutics companies. Asymmetrex is also courting contract research organizations, which provide preclinical cell culture assays to pharmaceutical companies, as a strategy to accelerate the introduction of the value of AlphaSTEM technology to their clients for identifying stem cell-toxic drugs earlier during drug development.
Sherley says the key to launching AlphaSTEM technology onward to future sales is industry visibility, education, and increasing prospective client contacts. Over the next several months the company has several scheduled events to boost AlphaSTEM visibility and education. These include a March 9 presentation at Clinical Trial Supply New England 2016, a March 22 free RegMedNet webinar, continued bi-weekly educational blog posts and a to-be-announced online audio interview with Director Sherley on RegMedNet, and a presentation at the 2016 Precision Medicine Symposium – RNAi/MicroRNAs to Stem Cells & Genome Editing on May 4-5.
Whether 2016 will be the year of adult tissue stem cell counting remains to be seen. Sherley says, “If not this year, then the next; but it is inevitable.” He says that the first to adopt the technology will realize a significant advantage over their competitors, whether between academic researchers at the bench, rival pharmaceutical companies, clinical investigators at the bedside, of physicians treating patients with approved stem cell therapies. “It’s too important in human biology not to make a difference.”
Asymmetrex, LLC is a Massachusetts life sciences company with a focus on developing technologies to advance stem cell medicine. Asymmetrex’s founder and director, James L. Sherley, M.D., Ph.D. is an internationally recognized expert on the unique properties of adult tissue stem cells. The company’s patent portfolio contains biotechnologies that solve the two main technical problems – production and quantification – that have stood in the way of successful commercialization of human adult tissue stem cells for regenerative medicine and drug development. In addition, the portfolio includes novel technologies for isolating cancer stem cells and producing induced pluripotent stem cells for disease research purposes. Currently, Asymmetrex’s focus is employing its technological advantages to develop facile methods for monitoring adult stem cell number and function in clinically important human tissues.