- The DOD studies seek to test the effectiveness of PLX-R18 as a novel medical countermeasure for Acute Radiation Syndrome (ARS) prior to and within 24 hours of exposure to high levels of radiation
- The DOD studies will be conducted in parallel with the ongoing ARS project with the NIH
HAIFA, Israel, Aug. 16, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Pluristem Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:PSTI) (TASE:PSTI), a leading developer of placenta-based cell therapy products, today announced that a pilot study of the company’s PLX-R18 cell therapy will be initiated by the U.S. Department of Defense’s (DOD) Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute (AFRRI), part of the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences (USU). The study will examine the effectiveness of PLX-R18 as a treatment for Acute Radiation Syndrome (ARS) prior to, and within the first 24 hours of exposure to radiation.
ARS results from exposure to high levels of radiation, such as in the case of a nuclear accident or attack, and can lead to severe health consequences including death. Pluristem recently reported positive data from studies of PLX-R18 cells as a treatment for ARS conducted by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). Data demonstrated improvement in survival rates and enhancement of blood lineages recovery.
PLX-R18 is Pluristem’s second cell therapy product in development. It is designed to treat bone marrow that is unable to produce enough blood cells due to a variety of causes including ARS, certain cancers or cancer treatments, or immune-mediated bone marrow failure. Pluristem received FDA clearance to initiate a U.S. Phase I trial of PLX-R18 in incomplete bone marrow recovery following hematopoietic cell transplantation. Preclinical data from trials conducted by the NIH, Hadassah Medical Center, and other prominent research institutions have shown that PLX-R18 cells secrete a range of specific proteins that trigger the regeneration of bone marrow hematopoietic cells, thereby supporting the recovery of blood cell production. With its capabilities, PLX-R18 could potentially treat a broad range of hematologic indications, which together constitute a substantial global market.
Acute Radiation Syndrome occurs following acute exposure to very high levels of radiation, and involves severe, potentially lethal injury to the bone marrow as well as to other organs and systems within the body. High doses of radiation can destroy the bone marrow’s ability to produce white cells, red cells and platelets; without these cells patients are at high risk of death.
Read more at U.S. Department of Defense to Conduct Studies of Pluristem’s PLX-R18 in a New ARS Project for Use Before Radiation Exposure