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International Stem Cell Corp. (ISCO) Creates Transplantable Human Cornea from Pluripotent Stem Cells

International Stem Cell Corporation’s research and development team has successfully created a functional and transplantable human cornea by developing a new method to derive corneal endothelium-like cells from human pluripotent stem cells.

This major milestone represents a significant step towards the creation of complete cornea tissue that can be used for transplantation. The accomplishment also supports prior data showing indications of corneal endothelium generated by ISCO's collaborators at Sankara Nethralaya Eye Hospital, India. Such cells by themselves could promote wound healing and regeneration of the cornea, as well as be used as a standalone medical treatment.

ISCO stated that development and commercialization of its cell-derived cornea tissue, along with manufacturing of Lifeline Cell Technology's media and cellular products, is the foundation for the company’s expansion to the Asian markets and for clinical collaboration with Indian biomedical organizations, including Sankara Nethralaya Eye Hospital and All-India Institute for Medical Sciences.

Asia represents a huge potential growth market for ISCO's Cornea program. In just India alone there are more than 4 million people suffering from corneal vision impairment with limited access to corneal tissue. International Stem Cell Corporation intends to work with its clinical affiliate in India to meet this healthcare demand.

Dr. Ruslan Semechkin, Vice President of Research & Development, stated, "This new method not only brings our cornea program closer to clinical use, but it also gives us additional licensing opportunities. We have made good progress towards our goal of creating usable corneas, however the additional work, necessary to prove that these endothelium-like cells can be fully functional, will be done in conjunction with our collaborators."

For additional information, visit the company’s website at www.internationalstemcell.com

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