Vet-Stem Secures Exclusive Veterinary Rights for Fat-Derived Stem Cells
Poway, California Vet-Stem, Inc., announced that a license agreement with the University of California has been completed that secures Vet-Stem's exclusive rights to stem cells derived from fat for veterinary use.
The veterinary rights for stem cells from fat were originally shared between the University of California and Pittsburg University. A license agreement with Artecel Inc., the licensee of Pittsburg University, provided Vet-Stem with the original license for use of the regenerative cells. With the addition of the license from the University of California, Vet-Stem now has exclusive rights for veterinary use, which improves the company's intellectual property position in this rapidly developing field.
As the first company in the world to offer fat-derived stem cell services for veterinary use, Vet-Stem has rapidly developed the market, treating more than 1,500 horses and dogs. The company moved to solidify its intellectual property position prior to commercial introduction of stem cell services to the multi-billion-dollar canine market.
"Intellectual property rights can be confusing in a rapidly developing market with evolving technology", said Bob Harman, DVM, MPVM, CEO of Vet-Stem. "We needed to do everything possible to protect the market that we are creating in regenerative veterinary medicine and to ensure that the value of the company is optimized. The value of this technology has increased greatly since the founding of the company in 2002 as the business model, therapeutic activity of the cells, and ease of tissue collection have all been demonstrated. We did not want to create a market and provide an opportunity for a potential competitor."
The company currently offers stem cell services to veterinarians for treatment of lameness in horses. New uses of regenerative cells are in development for diseases in dogs and horses that often times have few other treatment options. The combination of expanded uses of the cells and a growing network of veterinarians using regenerative cell therapy has created the need to secure exclusive rights.
Vet-Stem regenerative cells include stem cells as well as cells that produce growth factors, blood vessels, and assist with regeneration of tissues. These cells are obtained from processing a small fat sample from the injured animal. The regenerative cells are then shipped back to the veterinarian for injection directly into the injured site or tissue.
About Vet-Stem, Inc.
Vet-Stem, Inc. was formed in 2002 to bring regenerative medicine to the veterinary profession. This privately held company is working to develop therapies in veterinary medicine that apply regenerative technologies while utilizing the natural healing properties inherent in all animals.
In January 2004, Vet-Stem introduced the first veterinary stem cell service in the United States. Since that time there has been rapid adoption of this technology for treatment of tendon, ligament, and joint injuries by the veterinary community. Studies have shown that mesenchymal stem cells can dramatically improve the healing of injuries and diseases that have had very few treatment options in the past.