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Stem-cell company charged with hype

Stem-cell company charged with hype

By Elie Dolgin Cross-posted from The Great Beyond US regulators accused a stem cell biotech company on Tuesday of inflating claims about an early stage cell therapy. The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged Bothell, Washington-based CellCyte Genetics Corporation, along with its former chief executive and former chief scientific officer, with duping investors into believing that its experimental stem cell technology was nearing human trials. “CellCyte and its senior officers knew that it would take years of research to determine whether the stem cell discovery could be developed into a viable product,” said Marc Fagel, director of the SEC’s  … Read more

Business round-up: pluripotent products, all-star academics and headlines everywhere

Academic all-stars from the East and West Coasts of the US have united to advise a company with plans to use induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells to find drugs. The company, created from the merger of Boston-based Perian and San Francisco-based iZumi, will be called iPierian and run by iZumi CEO John Walker from San Francisco.  Read more

Stem-cell company Novocell brings in genomics CEO

Novocell, a San Diego company developing stem-cell technology for treating diabetes, has named its new CEO. John West has previously held management posts at Applied Biosystems. He was CEO of DNA sequencing company Solexa, until he sold it to Illumina for $600 million. (See the Novocell’s announcement and the San Diego Tribune article.  Read more

Al Gore, Shinya Yamanka, Genentech’s VCs, and induced pluripotency

iZumi Biotech has just announced a dream team, but they aren’t saying much about what exact game they’ll be playing with induced pluripotent stem cells. Here is the article in USA Today , announcing a deal with Kyoto University’s Shinya Yamanaka, who figured out how to transform specialized cells to an embryonic-like state. iZumi already has an agreement with the Gladstone Institute in San Francisco, where Yamanaka has a joint appointment.  Read more

Investors ♥ stem cells

Enthusiasm was more apparent than scepticism at the 4th Annual Stem Cell Summit, organized by investor, analyst and stem cell fan Robin Young, head of RRY Publications. This conference brought together a motley collection of companies, both well-known and obscure, and each was given ten minutes to tout themselves to potential investors and partners. Business models included cell banking, services, therapies, medical devices and tools; even the smallest companies were often relying on multiple business models.  Read more