A major scientific journal recently published a study led by one of PMCB’s Diabetes Consortium members. The animal study showed that a new cell line designed by the study’s authors have developed a method of reversing Type 1 diabetes. The key is that in order for the cell line to reverse Type 1 diabetes in humans, the cells must be encapsulated in a cocoon, as in PMCB’s Cell-in-a-Box technology.
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MELLIGEN STUDY HIGHLIGHTS
As outlined in the article, Type 1 diabetes is caused by the autoimmune destruction of insulin-producing pancreatic β-cells. Current treatment requires daily injections of insulin to control blood glucose levels or transplantation of insulin-secreting tissue. As an alternative to the transplantation of islets, a human liver cell line (Melligen) was genetically engineered to reverse type 1 diabetes (T1D). Numerous tests were completed during the various stages of the development process and studies were carried out to show that Melligen cells secreted insulin in response to physiological concentrations of glucose (blood sugar). Furthermore, when Melligen cells were transplanted into diabetic mice whose immune systems were essentially not functioning, the blood glucose levels of the mice became normal. This observation illustrates that Melligen cells can reverse the diabetic condition.
According to the article, Melligen has meaningful advantages over the current therapies but will require encapsulation in order to truly effective and protected from the body’s immune system:
“The utilization of Melligen cells or other nonpancreatic artificial β-cells as a cure for T1D will have an advantage over current insulin therapy regimes, in that the new technology will avoid the autoimmune process and mimic the natural physiological secretion of insulin from the pancreas, delivering the insulin first to the liver and then to the peripheral tissue in response to a glucose load, whereas the insulin delivered by injections or pumps reaches the peripheral tissue first and not the portal circulation. This should both reduce complications by reducing glucose excursions and narrowing the range of glucose concentrations tissues such as the eyes and kidneys are exposed to. This technology would also have the advantage over studies that deliver β-cell transcription factors to the liver, avoiding the need for the use of viral vectors and issues such as exocrine differentiation of liver tissue resulting in hepatitis-like syndromes and abnormal glucose tolerance seen in a number of studies.”
The study described the “successful generation of an artificial β-cell line, which, if encapsulated to avoid allograft rejection, may offer a clinically applicable cure for T1D.” Melligen cells have already been successfully encapsulated using the Cell-in-a-Box(R) process and experiments are already underway.
Armed with these valuable study results, management will likely take steps that will ultimately lead to the initiation of human clinical trials which, in turn, will serve to substantially raise the company’s value and its profile. PMCB is clearly not a “one-trick pony” and now has multiple shots on goal with the rights to use the cellulose-based live-cell encapsulation technology in developing treatments for both diabetes and cancer.
RECENT TRADING HISTORY FOR PHARMACYTE BIOTECH, INC.
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SENIOR ANALYST: ROB GOLDMAN
Rob Goldman founded Goldman Small Cap Research in 2009 and has over 20 years of investment and company research experience as a senior research analyst and as a portfolio and mutual fund manager. During his tenure as a sell side analyst, Rob was a senior member of Piper Jaffray's Technology and Communications teams. Prior to joining Piper, Rob led Josephthal & Co.'s Washington-based Emerging Growth Research Group. In addition to his sell-side experience Rob served as Chief Investment Officer of a boutique investment management firm and Blue and White Investment Management, where he managed Small Cap Growth portfolios and The Blue and White Fund.
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