January 24, 2021

The Niche

Trusted stem cell blog & resources

MultiStem

5 min read

Many are  jumping on the bandwagon of trying stem cells for COVID-19 or testing other cellular therapies for the novel coronavirus disease, but there have been problems with either the rationales for the trials themselves or more often with how they portrayed. Sometimes there has even been outright hype. I’ve called this collective trend of promotion of scads of trials of cell therapies for COVID “throwing spaghetti at the wall”. Some may stick, but most probably won’t. If fact, there’s a reasonable possibility that …Read More

4 min read

Could two stem cell biotechs Athersys and Mesoblast help in the battle against the novel coronavirus disease COVID-19? Stem cells, ARDS, and COVID-19 I’ve already written two pieces about the idea of using stem cells to battle COVID-19 (here and here), the sometimes fatal disease that arises from infection with the novel coronavirus. Older patients and those with underlying conditions are those at greatest risk of severe disease that results in hospitalization, entry into the ICU, and in some cases death. One of the …Read More

2 min read

This post includes my updated list of firms/products that have received FDA regenerative medicine advanced therapy designation or RMAT, which are in the public domain. The numbers really jumped in the last month. I’m assuming for the purposes of this resource page that all self-reports are accurate. Note that the links embedded into the firm names are to relevant press releases or other reference material. A special thanks to some folks at ARM for helping me keep the list up to date. You can …Read More

1 min read

There has been a lot of excitement this week about a press release from stem cell biotech Athersys that reported that treatment of stroke patients with its product MultiStem was associated with a statistically significant improvement at 1-year. This sounds encouraging and the stock has spiked up as a result. However, there are some naysayers including long-time stem cell biotech critic Adam Feuerstein, who today painted the Athersys press release as little more than spin. Feuerstein went through a list of what he describes …Read More

4 min read

The below is an excerpt from my book, Stem Cells: An Insider’s Guide. I hope you enjoy this excerpt and the book, which I think is a really good deal at under $27 paperback or under $17 for E-book version. Having our innovation and ethics too In the stem cell field you can have it both ways. As a company, you can be ethical and help patients. There are many examples of stem cell-related corporations doing “the right thing” when it comes to developing …Read More

11 min read

Today’s post is an interview I did with Dr. Van Bokkelen covering 10 questions. Dr. Gil Van Bokkelen is Chairman and CEO of Athersys, Inc., a company that has focused heavily on stem cells and regenerative medicine for more than a decade. For more on Dr. Van Bokkelen’s background see additional bio section at the end of this post. 1. Why stem cells? Of all the biotech areas you could have worked on, what inspired you to work on stem cells? Was there a defining moment, …Read More