BioTime Subsidiary LifeMap Sciences Announces Publication of Research Report Describing LifeMap Discovery™
ALAMEDA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- LifeMap Sciences, Inc., a subsidiary of BioTime, Inc. (NYSE MKT: BTX), announced today that the LifeMap Discovery™ product has been documented in a published paper authored by LifeMap Sciences' research and development team. LifeMap Discovery™ (available as of November 2012 via http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/) is the first "roadmap" directing scientists through the many hundreds of branch points in the stems of the tree of human cellular life. It also merges experimental knowledge on stem cell biology and regenerative medicine, striving to aid researchers in the quest to produce functional cells capable of regenerating particular tissues in the body, for the treatment of a variety of degenerative diseases.
LifeMap Discovery™ is a key component of LifeMap's therapeutic discovery collaboration with BioTime and is utilized in conjunction with LifeMap's proprietary bioinformatics tools to select the PureStem™ cells that are most likely to be useful in developing cell-based regenerative medicine therapies for a wide range of diseases.
The publication titled "LifeMap Discovery™: The embryonic development, stem cells, and regenerative medicine research portal" in the open access peer-reviewed journal PLOS ONE can be viewed via the link http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0066629. The publication describes the scientific and technological foundations of LifeMap Discovery™, the first road map of embryonic development on a cellular level. Key features that are described in the publication include the following:
Embryonic development tree
LifeMap Discovery™ displays more than 1,400 cell types and anatomical structures of the developing embryo and the cellular differentiation that occurs during mammalian embryonic development, branching from the zygote to the progenitor cells and terminating at the mature cells. It covers developmental paths of various types of cells, including blood, endothelium, motor neurons, bone, cartilage and many more.
Stem cell differentiation protocols
LifeMap Discovery™ provides more than 100 protocols used to induce differentiation of various embryonic and progenitor cells and of induced pluripotent stem cells into various cell types (for example, a protocol for derivation of motor neuron-like cells). Each protocol is displayed in a "card" that contains an informative and interactive viewer, sketching the protocol in a stepwise fashion.
LifeMap Discovery™ provides a wealth of information on diseases which represent potential targets for cell-based therapeutic approaches and medically relevant information relating to regenerative medicine. It also provides cell-based therapy approaches that apply cultured stem cells towards treatment of degenerative diseases, via replacement of damaged cells or tissues, and/or stimulation of the body's natural repair mechanisms.
Gene expression and signaling
Cells and anatomical compartments of the developing embryo are characterized by specific gene expression profiles and selective markers, as well as by signaling molecules that participate in pathways which guide embryonic development. LifeMap Discovery™ provides this molecular information for various cell types as well as for cultured stem, progenitor and primary cells. It also provides a centralized means of identifying cell types throughout in vivo embryonic development or in vitro stem cell differentiation procedures, based on specific gene expression profiles.
"The sophisticated detail in the LifeMap Discovery™ database is a reflection of a movement underway in regenerative medicine toward a higher definition of cell types in research and therapy," said Dr. Michael West, CEO of BioTime. "We believe the database will not only bring more traffic to the LifeMap database suite, but will also be the backbone for moving this increasingly complex field toward clinical application."
"The publication describing LifeMap Discovery™ in a leading journal in its field is a validation of the scientific merits of this leading edge state-of-the-art product," stated David Warshawsky, Ph.D., President and CEO of LifeMap Sciences. "Our team is dedicated to continuing to enhance LifeMap Discovery™ and we are delighted to see the rapid growth of use by the global research community, already several tens of thousands of users. We are eager to see the impact that this remarkable resource will have in the transformative field of regenerative medicine."
About LifeMap Sciences, Inc.
LifeMap Sciences' (www.lifemapsc.com) core technology and business is based on the LifeMap Integrated Biomedical Knowledgebase, the discovery platform for biomedical and stem cell research. This web-based platform includes GeneCards®, the leading human gene compendium; LifeMap Discovery™, the embryonic development, stem cell research and regenerative medicine compendium; and MalaCards, the human disease compendium. According to Google Analytics, the sites have generated more than 2,000,000 unique visitors with more than 13,000,000 page views, from more than 3,000 universities, institutions and biomedical companies in the past 12 months.
Via LifeMap BioReagents™, LifeMap offers leading edge reagents to researchers in academia, research hospitals, and biotech and pharma companies. LifeMap is BioTime's principal marketing subsidiary for research products, including PureStem™ human progenitor cells, PureStem™ packages, clinical and research grade human embryonic stem cell (hES) lines, culture media, and cell differentiation kits. The eCommerce portal also offers select recombinant proteins, including growth factors, signaling molecules, differentiation factors, cytokines and chemokines that complement BioTime research product lines.
In therapeutic discovery collaboration with BioTime, LifeMap's scientists utilize the Integrated Biomedical Knowledgebase to aid in the development of BioTime's proprietary library of more than 200 PureStem™ human progenitor cell types into products for the treatment of human diseases, especially degenerative diseases that might be treatable with cell replacement therapies. A bioinformatics platform developed by LifeMap is used to select the PureStem™ cells that are most likely to be useful in developing cell-based regenerative medicine therapies for a wide range of diseases.
About BioTime, Inc.
BioTime, headquartered in Alameda, California, is a biotechnology company focused on regenerative medicine and blood plasma volume expanders. Its broad platform of stem cell technologies is enhanced through subsidiaries focused on specific fields of application. BioTime develops and markets research products in the fields of stem cells and regenerative medicine, including a wide array of proprietary PureStem™ cell lines, HyStem® hydrogels, culture media, and differentiation kits. BioTime is developing Renevia™ (formerly known as HyStem®-Rx), a biocompatible, implantable hyaluronan and collagen-based matrix for cell delivery in human clinical applications. BioTime's therapeutic product development strategy is pursued through subsidiaries that focus on specific organ systems and related diseases for which there is a high unmet medical need. BioTime's majority owned subsidiary Cell Cure Neurosciences Ltd. is developing therapeutic products derived from stem cells for the treatment of retinal and neural degenerative diseases. BioTime's subsidiary OrthoCyte Corporation is developing therapeutic applications of stem cells to treat orthopedic diseases and injuries. Another subsidiary, OncoCyte Corporation, focuses on the diagnostic and therapeutic applications of stem cell technology in cancer, including the diagnostic product PanC-Dx™ currently being developed for the detection of cancer in blood samples. ReCyte Therapeutics, Inc. is developing applications of BioTime's proprietary induced pluripotent stem cell technology to reverse the developmental aging of human cells to treat cardiovascular and blood cell diseases. BioTime's subsidiary LifeMap Sciences, Inc. markets GeneCards®, the leading human gene database, as part of an integrated database suite that also includes the LifeMap Discovery™ database of embryonic development, stem cell research and regenerative medicine, and MalaCards, the human disease database. LifeMap Sciences also markets BioTime research products and PanDaTox, an innovative, recently developed, searchable database that can aid in the discovery of new antibiotics and biotechnologically beneficial products. Asterias Biotherapeutics, Inc. is a new subsidiary being used to acquire the stem cell assets of Geron Corporation, including patents and other intellectual property, biological materials, reagents and equipment for the development of new therapeutic products for regenerative medicine. BioTime's lead product, Hextend®, is a blood plasma volume expander manufactured and distributed in the U.S. by Hospira, Inc. and in South Korea by CJ CheilJedang Corporation under exclusive licensing agreements. Additional information about BioTime can be found on the web at www.biotimeinc.com.
Statements pertaining to future financial and/or operating results, future growth in research, technology, clinical development, and potential opportunities for BioTime and its subsidiaries, along with other statements about the future expectations, beliefs, goals, plans, or prospects expressed by management constitute forward-looking statements. Any statements that are not historical fact (including, but not limited to statements that contain words such as "will," "believes," "plans," "anticipates," "expects," "estimates") should also be considered to be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in the development and/or commercialization of potential products, uncertainty in the results of clinical trials or regulatory approvals, need and ability to obtain future capital, and maintenance of intellectual property rights. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements and as such should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect the business of BioTime and its subsidiaries, particularly those mentioned in the cautionary statements found in BioTime's Securities and Exchange Commission filings. BioTime disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.
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