Friday, May 16, 2008

The Launch of Novus Sanguis

I`ve mentioned this initiative before and it is particularly relevant now with stem cell reserch about to be discussed in parliament next week. The Novus Sanguis website is here.


Novussanguis Launch
International research consortium on cord blood and adult stem cells
for therapeutic applications

Paris, May 12th 2008 : Professor Colin McGuckin and the research group on cord blood at Newcastle University and the Fondation Jérôme Lejeune in Paris created Novussanguis to promote responsible research on cord blood and adult stem cells. 200 international participants are expected to attend the launch of this consortium on Wednesday 14th May at the Medical School of University Paris Descartes, in France.

The launch is supported by the French Research Ministry, and placed under the Patronage of Mr Hans-Gert Pöttering, President of the European Parliament.

Cord blood and adult stem cells are very attractive for research in cell therapy and regenerative medicine because of their high differentiation and expansion potential.
Adult stem cells can be harvested from several human tissues such as brain, bone marrow, peripheral blood, liver, cornea, retina, and pancreas. It is also possible to find stem cells in umbilical cord blood. With over 130 million births per year worldwide, cord blood is a particularly important source of readily available stem cells in terms of access and supply.
Adult stem cells play a key role in research for treatment of several diseases. Today, over 80 diseases are treatable with cord blood stem cells, mostly linked to the blood system (e.g. leukaemia) or the immune system (‘babies in a bubble’), but also diseases affecting the bone marrow, nervous system, heart or metabolism such as juvenile diabetes.

Novussanguis aims to meet the expectation of patients who could benefit from treatment with adult and cord blood stem cells.
Novussanguis scope is Regenerative Medicine and Cell Therapy based specifically on adult and cord blood stem cells.
The Novussanguis consortium is a platform of research starting with around fifteen laboratories focusing on research, innovation and the formation of the future generations of researchers.

The first projects to be financed by Novussanguis will initially carry out research including:
nervous tissues damaged by stroke
pancreatic tissues that can produce insulin in vitro to further research in diabetes
cardiac tissues damaged by myocardial infarct
epithelial tissues to improve treatment of wound healing and cornea
nervous tissues, bone, cartilage, tendons and blood vessels for orthopedic applications
epigenetic profiling of cord blood stem cells to improve tissue engineering
expansion and clinical cryopreservation of cord blood stem cells

Novussanguis aims to be a pragmatic consortium understanding the realities of modern research, including the necessity to collaborate with biotechnology companies, in order to have an impact on tomorrow’s patients health.

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