Case Number 115077 - Masseter Muscle-derived Cardiac Progenitor Cell Cultures, Methods of Deriving Cardiomyocytes and Methods of Treating Cardiovascular Conditions

Contact: Jill Uhl
Phone: 513-558-5621

Description:  Dr. Yi-gang Wang’s laboratory has discovered that adult masseter muscle progenitors (MMP) are a novel autologous source of cardiac progenitor cells for cardiovascular disease therapy. Compared to other sources of exogenous progenitors cells such as embryonic stem cells (ES), induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) and adult progenitors (including cardiac and bone marrow stem cells), use of MMP avoids the challenges facing these alternatives including ethical issues, propensity for immunogenicity rejection or limited cardiac differentiation efficiency. Further advantages regarding MMP over the current state of the art include:

1) MMP can be isolated from easily accessible masseter muscle without risk of mandible motor dysfunction and cultured for transplantation;
2) MMP-derived cardiac progenitor cells develop directly into cardiac cells, without requiring re-programming of non-cardiac cells into cardiomyocyte-like cells, which raises questions of safety, efficiency and technical issues;
3) Developing cardiomyoctyes from MMP is more efficient and cost-effective than comparable approaches; and
4) Autologous MMP therapy is safer than current techniques from the point of view of teratoma formation and immunogenicity rejection.

The inventors hope this new technology will be developed into a standard protocol therapy used during cardiac event recovery or preventive repairs. It is thought that when further trials are completed that the invention could offer important clinical and research opportunities such as:

o New prospects for alternative bioengineered pacemakers to electronic pacing devices for patients with intra-cardiac conduction defects like sick sinus syndrome, and atrioventricular block, infra-Hisian block, and bundle-branch block.
o Discovery of a 'switch' that modifies genes known to be essential for heart development which could enable the repair of birth defects in children, along with applications for many other cardiovascular conditions such as DiGeorge, Velocardiofacial, CHARGE, Fetal Alcohol, Alagille, LEOPARD, and Noonan syndromes, as well as Retinoic Acid Embryopathy.
o Use of the neural crest origin of MMP (referred as masseter neural crest stem cells or MNCS) to provide novel opportunities for craniofacial related congenital cardiac abnormality research.

This invention is targeted to the stem cell therapy market, specifically for the cardiovascular disease indication. The global stem cell therapy market is projected to be worth $330 million by the year 2020, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 39.5% with a calculation that the total market today may be worth approximately $62 million. As subdivided by mode of treatment the current market for autologous stem cell therapies is worth approximately $21.7 million.

US Provisional Patent: 62/154,341