Company hopes that transaction will allow the firm to expand its portfolio in this area.

Invitrogen reports that it has made a minority investment in Q Therapeutics, a company pursuing cell therapeutics for the central nervous system (CNS). The move will aid Invitrogen in developing instrumentation related to this field of research.

“Part of Invitrogen’s two-pronged strategy is to invest in growth areas such as the promising field of cell therapy,” says Paul Grossman, Invitrogen svp for strategy and corporate development. “By investing early in a company such as Q Therapeutics, we can increase our learning around the types of tools such companies need, which will not only allow us to maximize our technology portfolio but also help us move the field more quickly toward groundbreaking therapies.”

Q Therapeutics focuses on diseases that result in poor signal conduction and those causing neuronal death. Cells™ uses neural glial cells that the company believes will provide the fastest route to restoring function in patients with demyelinating diseases and certain other neurodegenerative illnesses. Initial targets include multiple sclerosis, transverse myelitis ™, and Lou Gehrig’s disease. Clinical trials for TM are anticipated at Johns Hopkins University in 2009, Q Therapeutics reports.

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