For many years those with ALS also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, have prayed for a cure for the disease that would eventually kill them. And now an Israeli company, BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics has been granted a US patent for their autologous stem cell technology.
Israel-based BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics said on Monday the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has granted the company a key patent for its autologous stem cell technology.The following is a clip from Channel 2 in Israel about this breakthrough. It is in Hebrew with subtitles.
The patent covers BrainStorm's stem cells induced to secrete elevated levels of neurotrophic factors for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.
Pending approval from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration, the company is preparing for its upcoming mid-stage Phase II trial in the United States with its NurOwn adult stem cell therapy.
BrainStorm is developing NurOwn for the treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord.
Separately, the company said it has signed a definitive agreement with Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston to conduct a Phase II clinical trial of NurOwn in ALS, pending FDA approval. The other two clinical sites slated for the trial are the University of Massachusetts Memorial Hospital and Mayo Clinic.
"The recent bill introduced to the U.S. Senate to support regenerative medicine research is yet another indication of the increasing recognition that stem cells hold the promise for curing life-threatening and debilitating conditions like ALS," said Chaim Lebovits, BrainStorm's president.
"We are very encouraged by the bill's proposal to appoint a council that would develop and maintain a national strategy for the promotion of regenerative medicine research and development."
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Stephen Hawking has ALS and is boycotting Israel. Will he show himself to be a true hypocrite and take this treatment or will he have the fortitude to refuse this cure? I bet it will be the first.
For other sufferers of ALS there is now true hope. Let us hope that the final trials all go well and thousands are now cured. How Mr. Gehrig would be jumping with joy for that.