Edinburgh-Headquartered UK National Health Service Provider is Third Designated Site for European Clinical Trial
MARLBOROUGH, Mass. — August 20, 2012 – Advanced Cell Technology, Inc. (“ACT”; OTCBB: ACTC), a leader in the field of regenerative medicine, announced today that Scotland’s NHS Lothian has been confirmed as a site for its Phase I/II human clinical trial for Stargardt’s Macular Dystrophy (SMD) using retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells derived from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs).
“NHS Lothian should be a superb partner for our EU clinical trial for SMD,” said Gary Rabin, chairman and CEO of ACT. “We are particularly pleased to be working with the Principal Investigator, Professor Baljean Dhillon, and his team. Additionally, we would like to thank the men and women of the Scottish Development Authority and Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service (SNBTS) for their tireless efforts to help make this history-making clinical trial a reality.”
This approved, Phase I/II clinical trial for SMD is a prospective, open-label study designed to determine the safety and tolerability of RPE cells derived from hESCs following sub-retinal transplantation to patients with advanced SMD. It is similar in design to the company’s US trials for SMD and dry age-related macular degeneration initiated in July 2011.
“SMD represents an important unmet need in the wider clinical arena of macular degeneration,” said Professor Dhillon, BMed Sci, BM BS, FRCS, Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon, at the Princess Alexandra Eye Pavilion, NHS Lothian and Honorary Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Edinburgh. “This trial will evaluate a promising potential new treatment for this condition, using hESC-derived RPE cells.”
Professor Marc Turner, Medical Director of SNBTS continued, “ hESC-derived RPE cells represent one of the first of a new generation of regenerative therapies and is an example of the high quality clinical research being conducted in, and supported by, NHS Scotland which we hope will help to transform medicine over the coming decades.”
On July 30, the company announced that the third patient in this SMD clinical trial had been treated.
More information on the company’s clinical trials will be posted today on Mr. Rabin’s Chairman’s blog.
About Stargardt’s Disease
Stargardt’s disease or Stargardt’s Macular Dystrophy is a genetic disease that causes progressive vision loss, usually starting in children between 10 to 20 years of age. Eventually, blindness results from photoreceptor loss associated with degeneration in the pigmented layer of the retina, called the retinal pigment epithelium, which is the site of damage that the company believes the hESC-derived RPE may be able to target for repair after administration.
About Advanced Cell Technology, Inc.
Advanced Cell Technology, Inc., is a biotechnology company applying cellular technology in the field of regenerative medicine. For more information, visit www.advancedcell.com.
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