PARIS and KYOTO, Japan, Oct. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- Cellectis (Alternext: ALCLS), the French genome engineering specialist, and the Center for iPS Cells Research and Application (CiRA) of Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan, have announced today that they have started a scientific collaboration to combine Cellectis' genome engineering technologies with CiRA's induced pluripotent stem cell (iPS) technology to improve the natural characteristics of iPS cells for use as cellular tools.
CiRA was created in January 2008 by Kyoto University as part of an effort to advance iPS cells research. CiRA is headed by Prof Shinya Yamanaka, who pioneered iPS cells technology.
iPS cells are adult cells that have been reprogrammed to behave like embryonic stem cells. Theoretically, they can differentiate into any other cell type. Prof. Shinya Yamanaka and his collaborators first described their breakthrough in 2006, which has since provided the scientific community with the tools to generate an endless source of stem cells. Importantly, iPS cells are not associated with the ethical issues characteristic of embryonic cells.
CiRA and Cellectis are planning to combine the groundbreaking iPS technology with the genome engineering expertise of Cellectis to rationally engineer the genome of these cells in order to provide better control over their behavior.
"This collaboration supports the approach developed by Cellectis with Ectycell, its subsidiary dedicated to the industrial uses of iPS cells," declared David Sourdive, Executive Vice President, Corporate Development for Cellectis. "Together we believe we can maximize the natural synergy between these two complementary approaches to cell engineering, to develop technologies that could have a major impact in the stem cell field".
Cellectis is a pioneer in the field of genome engineering. The company designs and markets innovative tools -meganucleases. These molecular scissors enable targeted modifications to DNA, with applications in the research, biomanufacturing, agrobiotechnology and therapeutic sectors.
To date, Cellectis has formed over 20 academic research partnerships and has established more than 50 agreements with pharmaceutical laboratories, seed producers and biotech companies across the world. The company holds exclusive rights to a portfolio of over 260 patents granted or pending.
Since 2007, Cellectis has been listed on the NYSE-Euronext Alternext market (code: ALCLS) in Paris and has secured over euro 70 million in funding since inception.
More information at www.cellectis.com
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Ectycell was established as a subsidiary of Cellectis in September 2009 to research and commercialize industrial uses of products derived from stem cells. Its initial goals are to develop tools for generating induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from adult cells, robust and reproducible differentiation of stem cells, and cell libraries for testing drug candidates.
Kyoto University founded the Center for iPS Cell Research and Application (CiRA) as a part of the Institute for Integrated Cell-Material Sciences (iCeMS) in January 2008 to advance induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell research and applications. It was designated as the university's 14th research institute in April 2010. CiRA is a pioneering organization that specializes in iPS cell research, the world's first research institute of its kind.
This press release and the information contained herein do not constitute an offer to sell or subscribe, or a solicitation of an offer to buy or subscribe, for shares in Cellectis in any country. This press release contains forward-looking statements that relate to the Company's objectives. Such forward-looking statements are based on the current expectations and assumptions of the Company's management only and involve risk and uncertainties. Potential risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, whether the Company will be successful in implementing its strategies, whether there will be continued growth in the relevant market and demand for the Company's products, new products or technological developments introduced by competitors, and risks associated with managing growth. Unfavorable developments in connection with these and other risks and uncertainties described, in particular, in the Company's prospectus prepared in connection with its IPO and on which the French Autorite des marches financiers ("AMF") granted its visa no. 07-023 on January 22, 2007, could cause the Company to fail to achieve the objectives expressed by the forward-looking statements above.