Some good news today as the pioneering induced pluripotent stem (IPS) cell trial led by Dr. Masayo Takahashi will resume.
This clinical study with a focus on macular degeneration has been on hold for quite some time due to regulatory changes in Japan. There had also been concerns over mutations in the 2nd patient’s IPS cell product.
As previous signs had indicated, the new clinical work will have an allogeneic focus, most likely drawing IPS cells from a bank.
According to a Japan Times article:
For the second trial, the CDB will develop retinal tissues from iPS cells supplied by Kyoto University’s Center for iPS Cell Research and Application, headed by Nobel laureate Shinya Yamanaka, the creator of the pluripotent cells.
Transplants of CDB-developed retinal tissues will be conducted at Kobe City Medical Center General Hospital and Osaka University Hospital.
This is exciting and I’m very curious to see how this clinical work develops.
In 2014, Dr. Takahashi won my Stem Cell Person of the Year Award.
This may also signal a door opening for other IPS cell trials in Japan including one for Parkinson’s Disease by Jun Takahashi.