Editor's Picks

Health & Wellness

Cell therapy company licenses IU School of Medicine technology that creates blood vessels

Apr. 13, 2016

Indiana University Research and Technology Corp., which protects intellectual property developed in the Indiana University campus system, has licensed technology that creates human blood vessels to Cellular Dynamics International, a Fujifilm company based in Madison, Wisconsin.

mervin c. yoder

The technology was developed by Dr. Mervin C. Yoder, the Richard and Pauline Klinger Professor of Pediatrics and professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at the Indiana University School of Medicine. | PHOTO COURTESY OF IUPUI

The technology was developed by Dr. Mervin C. Yoder, the Richard and Pauline Klinger Professor of Pediatrics and professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at the Indiana University School of Medicine. He said a condition called peripheral arterial disease, caused by damaged blood vessels, diminishes blood flow to a person's lower extremities, with potentially serious consequences.

"About eight to 12 million Americans and 27 million people in Europe and North America are affected by peripheral arterial disease," Yoder said. "Treatment costs in the United States alone are greater than $4.5 billion. Because their blood vessels have been damaged, patients may develop ulcers or gangrene. Twenty-eight percent require foot or limb amputation. The technology licensed to Cellular Dynamics International may be useful to restore the delivery of blood and avoid amputation."

The technology creates cells that are injected in a gel material directly into a limb to encourage the regeneration of small blood vessels. Users also can use 3-D bioprinting to make the cells necessary to create artificial blood vessels that can be transplanted into the limb.

Tak Okada, chief technology officer at Cellular Dynamics International, said the company is pleased to license this novel method to develop the technology for therapeutic use, with potential customers in the pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical sectors.

"We believe that Dr. Yoder's novel technology for the creation of blood vessels has therapeutic potential for the treatment of PAD, a disease for which there are limited treatment options today," he said. "A large number of cells are necessary for any therapeutic application, and we chose to license this technology not only because it produces the quality of cells necessary for therapeutic use, but also because it enables the quantity by large volume production."

Read more Health & Wellness stories »