Firm will study allogenic stem cells, identify predictive biomarkers for meniscus-like tissue, and conduct preclinical work.
TiGenix has been awarded a €1.81 million, or $2.41 million, grant to support its R&D efforts a meniscus repair program. The money was received through the Institute for the Promotion of Innovation by Science and Technology and paid by the Flemish Government.
The two-year program will focus on the further development and application of allogenic stem cells in combination with a biocompatible scaffold, the identification of biomarkers predictive for the quality of meniscus-like tissue, and establishing preclinical proof-of-principle for cellular repair of meniscus lesions. As part of the project, TiGenix will collaborate with the Biomedical Research Institute of the University of Hasselt and the University of Leuven.
Currently, TiGenix’ lead product ChondroCelect® marks the company’s effort to develop regenerative medicinal products to restore the functionality of the joint and ultimately delay or prevent osteoarthritis.
“This is the second substantial grant awarded to TiGenix this year, and we see this as a clear recognition of our scientific excellence in cartilage and joint diseases,” remarks Gil Beyen, CEO of TiGenix. In June, TiGenix received E1.2 million, or $1.6 million, from the EU for its participation in TREAT-OA, a research consortium focused on the development of novel diagnostics and treatments for osteoarthritis.