SAN DIEGO, Oct. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Novocell, Inc., a preclinical stage diabetes company, today announced that it will receive a Disease Team award totaling $20 million from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM). The Disease Team includes a group of scientists at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), led by Dr. Jeff Bluestone, which is contracted to receive $2.8 million. The funding will advance Novocell's development of a first in kind cellular therapy for the treatment of diabetes.
Novocell's proposal was selected for funding by CIRM's governing board, the Independent Citizens Oversight Committee (ICOC), with advisement from the Scientific and Medical Research Funding Working Group. "Novocell's proposal addresses an unmet medical need, contains compelling preliminary data in animals and is backed by a high quality team of scientists. It is the expectation that all Disease Team award recipients will be entering the clinic after the funding period. Novocell's systematic approach is expected to do just that, and as a consequence, CIRM and the ICOC decided to fund Novocell's efforts," said Allan Trounson, President of CIRM.
Nearly 25 million people in the United States are afflicted with diabetes. Many diabetics have loss of insulin secreting cells resulting in poor blood sugar regulation. Novocell is developing an alternative to insulin injections by producing cells that will secrete insulin in patients similar to the cells that were lost. "We thank California voters for approving Proposition 71, and CIRM and the ICOC for their support of our science and scientists. This award will substantially accelerate our progress, which will benefit millions of Americans," said John West, President & Chief Executive Officer of Novocell.
"We are grateful for the confidence in our scientific team and the continuing financial support of our developm
|SOURCE Novocell, Inc.|
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