Prof Frank Barry takes ADIPOA-2 on the road

ADIPOA-2 Coordinator Professor Frank Barry of NUI Galway has had a busy 2018 thus far. He has organised and been invited to present at several conferences, provide keynote talks and lead seminars around the world raising the profile of ADIPOA-2 internationally within academic and industrial circles.

Here is a list of events:

  1. Speaker on August 17 2018: Georgia Tech CMaT Annual Retreat, Madison WI, USA
  2. Invited Seminar on July 23 2018: Colorado State University Veterinary Orthopaedic Centre Fort Collins, CO, USA
  3. Keynote Speaker on July 6 2018: Whitaker Bioengineering Symposium, Galway, Ireland
  4.  Keynote Speaker; Conference and workshop organiser on June 28 2018: CALIN Cell and Gene Therapy Industry Symposium, Galway, Ireland
  5.  Invited Seminar on June 7 2018: University of Guelph School of Veterinary Medicine, Guelph, ON, Canada
  6.  Keynote Speaker on May 24 2018: Canadian Connective Tissue Conference, Toronto, ON, Canada
  7. Plenary Speaker on May 18 2018: American Society for Gene and Cell Therapy Annual Conference, Chicago, IL, USA
  8.  Keynote Speaker on May 12 2018: Canadian Bone and Joint Conference, London ON, Canada
  9. Plenary Speaker on May 2 2018: International Society for Cellular Therapy Annual Conference, Montreal, QC, Canada
  10.  Seminar Speaker in January 2018: Division of Orthopaedics, University of Toronto, ON, Canada

Here is some digital press coverage from the roadshow:

 

ADIPOA-2 features in Azienza Opedaliera di Padova June newsletter 2018

On pages 8-12 of the June 2018 Informasanità, the Azienda Ospedaliera di Padova newsletter, ADIPOA-2 is featured. The role within the project and the team at the Rheumatology Unit, Department of Medicine – DIMED, University of Padova (UNIPD) are highlighted.

Read the entire publication here:  INFORMASANITA-GIUGNO-2018

Read more about the Rheumatology Unit of the Department of Medicine (DIMED) of University of Padova here.

Cell and Gene Therapy Industry Forum in Galway addresses opportunities for innovation

Leaders in industry and science met and discussed recent advances in cell and gene therapy research and development at an industry-focused event held on Thursday, June 28, 2018, at the Meyrick Hotel in Galway, Ireland.  Industry representation included presentations from Takeda, ReNeuron, Avectas and Valitacell. ADIPOA-2 Coordinator Prof Frank Barry presented the project’s mission, progress and innovative aspects.

The emerging fields of cell and gene therapy are considered by many to be the next revolution in medicine, promising unprecedented and previously unimaginable treatments for major life-altering conditions and degenerative diseases. There are few areas of biomedical research which have attracted so much attention in recent years and been surrounded by so much expectation and promise. However, serious challenges remain in addressing manufacturing efficiency, cost reduction, clinical trials and delivery to patients.

The event sponsors were The Celtic Advanced Life Science Innovation Network, an Ireland Wales 2014-2020 programme partially funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government.

Speakers included: Robin Ali, University College London, Frank Barry REMEDI at NUI Galway, John Sinden, ReNeuron, Michael McGuire Avectas, Andrew Finnerty CCMI, Maria del Pilar Redondo, Takeda Europe, Mary Murphy REMEDI at NUI Galway, Stephanie Davis Valitacell and Gerry McCauliffe of Omnispirant.

Read the entire event programme: CALIN Galway Programme. 

ADIPOA-2 celebrates International Clinical Trials Day with the HRB-TMRN

EU funded projects ADIPOA-2, AUTOSTEM, NEPHSTROM and VISICORT coordinated by the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at National University of Ireland, Galway exhibited at a unique outreach activity targeted at primary school students. The event called the START competition was the brainchild of the Health Research Board (Ireland)’s Trials Methodology Research Network (HRB-TMRN) in Galway. In celebration of International Clinical Trials Day and to draw attention to clinical research conducted in Ireland, young people were invited to design, conduct and report on a randomized clinical trial. On May 18, 2018, three of the short-listed schools assembled at the University in Galway to visit interactive exhibitions, talk with researchers, perform mini-experiments, take part in lively science demonstrations and collect their prizes. The winning school was St. Joseph’s National School from Kinvara, County Galway.

Special thanks to Dr Siobhan Gaughan who organized the stand, Georgina Shaw who prepared the stem cell plates and to NUI Galway volunteers Dr Tina Harte, Dr Cathal Ó Flatharta, Dr. Nahidul Islam, Hannah Egan, Niamh Leonard, Dr. Emily Growney Kalaf, Claire Dooley and Dulan Hasantha Jayasooriya who volunteered their time to work with the young people on behalf of the EU funded project, STEM promotion.  The STEMinator cards used at the exhibition were designed by Cúram, NUI Galway. Also thank you to Lauren, Alibhe and Charlotte for creating the stem cell models.

Read more about the START competition here.

 

ADIPOA-2 clinical study highlighted in University of Padua publication

On March 29, 2018, the online magazine Il Bo published an update on the ADIPOA-2 clinical trial ongoing at the University of Padua and other sites. Read the story here.

 

New ADIPOA2 research published from Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Montpellier

‘Mesenchymal stem cells derived exosomes and microparticles protect cartilage and bone from degradation in osteoarthritis’ by authors: Stella CosenzaMaxime RuizKarine ToupetChristian Jorgensen & Danièle Noël was published online on 24 November 2017 in the open access Nature publication Scientific Reports.

Abstract: Mesenchymal stem or stromal cells (MSCs) exert chondroprotective effects in preclinical models of osteoarthritis (OA). Most of their therapeutic effects are mediated via soluble mediators, which can be conveyed within extracellular vesicles (EVs). The objective of the study was to compare the respective role of exosomes (Exos) or microvesicles/microparticles (MPs) in OA. MPs and Exos were isolated from bone marrow murine BM-MSCs through differential centrifugation. Effect of MPs or Exos was evaluated on OA-like murine chondrocytes and chondroprotection was quantified by RT-qPCR. In OA-like chondrocytes, BM-MSC-derived MPs and Exos could reinduce the expression of chondrocyte markers (type II collagen, aggrecan) while inhibiting catabolic (MMP-13, ADAMTS5) and inflammatory (iNOS) markers. Exos and MPs were also shown to protect chondrocytes from apoptosis and to inhibit macrophage activation. In vivo, Exos or MPs were injected in the collagenase-induced OA (CIOA) model and histomorphometric analyses of joints were performed by µCT and confocal laser microscopy. BM-MSCs, MPs and Exos equally protected mice from joint damage. In conclusion, MPs and Exos exerted similar chondroprotective and anti-inflammatory function in vitro and protected mice from developing OA in vivo, suggesting that either Exos or MPs reproduced the main therapeutic effect of BM-MSCs.

Read more about the role of Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Montpellier in ADIPOA2 here.

Scientific Reports 7, Article number 16214 (2017)

Doi: 10.1038/s4 1598-017-15376-8

Published online 24 November 2017-11-29

Read the entire paper here.

 

 

ADIPOA2 meets the public at the Galway Science & Technology Festival 2017

ADIPOA-2 researchers at NUI Galway exhibited at the Galway Science and Technology Forum on 26 November 2017. In excess of 20,000 people attended the exhibition day. The NUI Galway regenerative medicine stand was the brainchild of Dr Siobhán Gaughan who works across several EU-funded stem cell projects coordinated at NUI Galway. Researchers Georgina Shaw, Amy Burke and Eka Mukeria, along with Siobhán Gaughan were on hand to explain the cell research ongoing at the university, the objectives and mission of ADIPOA-2, and to inspire the next generation of stem cell scientists. Several activities were on exhibition.

Microscopes were on hand to display bone marrow-derived MSCs and cells differentiated into fat cells. This display was used as an aid to discuss or explain how we need stem cells in our body to replace dead cells in our body and how these stem cells can differentiate down different pathways to make new fat, bone, skin and muscle.

Anatomical models were exhibited to explain the importance of the three EU-funded clinical trials involving stem cells that currently taking place through the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at NUI Galway:

  • ADIPOA-2 is treating osteoarthritis using adipose-derived stromal cells.  Cells are isolated from fat tissue procured by liposuction, expanded under GMP (good manufacturing practices) conditions in Centre for Cell Manufacturing in Ireland (CCMI), the cell manufacturing facility at NUI Galway and injected into the knee of people with osteoarthritis.  The treatment aims to reduce the pain and inflammation.
  • VISICORT project aims to treat corneal transplant rejection by using an infusion of human bone marrow-derived stromal cells obtained from healthy bone marrow donors.  The cells are expanded in CCMI cell manufacturing facility as a cell product, frozen and shipped to Charite Hospital in Berlin where corneal transplant patients will be treated.  The cell therapy used in this trial aims to reduce the risk of rejection of the corneal transplant.
  • NEPHSTROM is a project involving a clinical trial which aims to treat diabetic kidney disease using bone marrow-derived stem cells. Complications of diabetes were explained to help contextualise this project and a diabetic foot model with a black toe was also on hand.

AUTOSTEM is an EU-funded project to develop a robotic clean room platform system for the manufacture of large quantities of cells in bioreactors.  These large quantities of therapeutic cells will be required once cell therapy clinical trial results prove successful and a cohort of patients will be line up for treatment worldwide. The AUTOSTEM video ran on a loop for display to the public.

Special thanks to Dr Paul Lohan for tech support with the films and Dr Georgina Shaw for supplying the cells for display. Also to Ning Ge and Yicheng Ding of the iPS cell group at REMEDI led by Prof Sanbing Shen.

For more photos and information about the Galway Science & Technology Festival 2017, please follow us on Twitter @Adipoa2

For more information on the projects mentioned, please see:

  • ADIPOA-2 http://adipoa2.eu/ is led by Prof Frank Barry. Cartilage repair in the knee using stem cells derived from fat.
  • VISICORThttp://visicort.eu/ is coordinated by Prof Matthew Griffin. Infusions of bone marrow (BM)- derived stem cells to treat people with corneal transplants avoid transplant rejection.
  • NEPHSTROM http://nephstrom.eu/ Led by Prof Tim O’Brien. Infusions of BM-MSCs to treat patients with chronic kidney disease
  • AUTOSTEM http://www.autostem2020.eu/ is coordinated by Prof Mary Murphy. This project is developing a robotic platform and bioreactor which will grow the many cells required to treat future patients. A model bioreactor was available for demonstration.

Galway Advertiser Science Week 2017

ADIPOA2 is presented at the START competition in May 2017, Galway

Does it help your fitness to have an event as a goal when you are training? Can cartoons and comics help children to achieve better results in tests? How would you even find out?

Dr Siobhán Gaughan, NUI Galway Programmme Manager of ADIPOA-2, VISICORT and AUTOSTEM was on hand at the awards ceremony for a schools’ competition called “START” whose aim was to encourage school students to come up with interesting questions and to design and run trials to answer them in a scientific way.

“It is one of the only initiatives out there that is teaching children about randomised trials,” says Dr Sandra Galvin, who co-ordinates the Health Research Board Trials Methodology Research Network, which runs the START initiative. “We need more people to participate in trials to improve healthcare, so there is that big important picture here, and it comes down to kids having fun and they take the message home.” For more information about taking part, see hrb-tmrn.ie/start-competition.

Siobhán created and managed a presentation area for the three projects, spoke to the school groups and visitors who were interested in the planned clinical trials for ADIPOA-2 and VISICORT taking place at NUI Galway’s Clinical Research Facility. A sister project, AUTOSTEM was also represented. This project is looking ahead of the clinical trials in order to meet the needs of the clinics in the future by developing automated cell factories to produce the vast quantities of cells which will be required should the clinical trials prove successful.

ADIPOA-2 will present at EU-MSC2 meeting in Leiden in September

Hosted by Leiden University Medical Center, the EU MSC2 2017 meeting in Leiden, NL on September 12th and 13th will assemble twelve EU-funded, mesenchymal stromal cell-focussed consortia. Projects to be presented include: REDDSTARREACH, NephstromSCIENCEVISICORT and Adipoa-2AUTOSTEMBOOSTB4, SEPCELL, RESSTORE,  RETHRIM, Stellar, MERLIN, and RESPINE. This two day, interactive meeting will be held at the Stadsgehoorzaal Leiden. Three overarching aspects of the EU-MSC2 meeting include: mechanisms of action and potency assays; an interactive panel discussion on product development, and product development and market authorisation in a changing regulatory landscape.

The objectives of the meeting are to:

  • Enhance knowledge-sharing between EU research groups working in the mesenchymal stromal cell biology domain
  • Engage with European Commission Project Officers and other stakeholders from International Society of Cellular Therapy, stem cell ethicists and the European Medicines Agency (EMA)
  • Assemble trans-disciplinary research groups working across the global health spectrum but with a common focus of mesenchymal stromal cell biology
  • Bring up-and-coming researchers together for networking purposes, and to explore future consortium building and international funding application opportunities

Expected impacts and outcomes:

  • Provide opportunities to develop new mesenchymal stromal cell networks
  • Disseminate the findings and challenges between MSC-focussed consortia
  • Improve the communication potential of research, outcomes and the value of the research
  • Explore potential for new commercial technologies
  • Collectively enhance the quality and impact of planned clinical trials

These EU-funded projects are:

  • Improving the quality of life for European citizens
  • Progressing the clinical translation of MSC research and developments

For more information, please visit EU MSC2 2017.
Register via Eventbrite by August 14 2017.
Read the EU-MSC2 2015 meeting report here.

ADIPOA2 Trial commences in Germany

ADIPOA2 partners Evangelisches Waldkrankenhaus Spandau today announced the enrollment of the first patients in the German arm of the ADIPOA2 trial.