The Stem Cell Institute (under the University of Science, Vietnam National University Ho Chi Minh City) has transferred its CartilatistTM - an off-the-shelf product containing mesenchymal stem cells for the treatment of knee osteoarthritis and spinal degeneration.
It is the first stem cell drug produced by Vietnam.
Cartilatist contains living stem cells and can be preserved by freezing and injected immediately into the patient's joints or discoid menisci to treat degenerative diseases.
Starting in 2012, Assoc. Prof., Dr. Pham Van Phuc and the research team at the institute began to study the technology of producing Cartilatist. In 2016, Cartilatist was formed and then moved on to the quality assessment stage.
Recently, the institute has transferred the technology to the Van Hanh General Hospital in District 10, HCMC for ten years.
As planned, the product will be mass-produced by 2019 and undergo clinical evaluation by 2020-2021.
Students join a short training course at the Ho Chi Minh City-based Stem Cell Institute. (Photo: vinastemcelllab)
"In large-scale production, product quality is stable, satisfying a prerequisite for stable therapeutic efficacy and a dramatic reduction in the cost," Dr. Phuc said, adding that his team hoped the technology will be suitable for a large number of patients.
Depending on the type of cell, the stem cell mechanism affects the disease in very different ways. However, the greatest advantage of the stem cell therapy to date is that it has been found to generate less undesirable effects than traditional methods.
Cartilatist is the third generation of stem cell product for use in humans. Currently, not many countries have the technology, only about ten stem cell products are licenced for human use around the world, Dr. Phuc informed, saying that this is the first stem cell drug researched and developed by Vietnam.
The Stem Cell Institute is also developing many new products, such as Modulatist for autoimmune chronic inflammation treatment; Vasculatist for the treatment of blood vessel obstruction; Bonetist for the treatment of bone diseases; Liverist applied in decompensated hepatitis treatment; Kidist in treating chronic renal failure; and BabyEver stem cell products for cosmetic use.
Previously, the institute carried out a State-level research project on technologies for treating diabetes combined with clinical trials at Van Hanh General Hospital under licence from the Ministry of Health.NDO