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For Immediate Release
Company name: DAIICHI SANKYO COMPANY, LIMITED
Representative: Sunao Manabe, Representative Director, President and COO
(Code no.: 4568, First Section, Tokyo Stock Exchange)
Please address inquiries to Noriaki Ishida, Executive Officer,
Vice President, Corporate Communications Department
Daiichi Sankyo Invests in Osaka University Spin-Off Venture with the Aim of Commercializing iPS-derived Cardiomyocyte Sheet
Tokyo, Japan (August 7, 2017) – Daiichi Sankyo Company, Limited (hereafter, Daiichi Sankyo) today announced that it has signed an investment contract with Cuorips Inc. (hereafter, Cuorips), an Osaka University spin-off venture to receive an option right concerning the worldwide commercialization of iPS-derived cardiomyocyte (hereafter, iPS-CM) sheet*1 developed by Cuorips.
The iPS-CM sheet is an allogeneic cell therapy product*2 consisting of cardiomyocyte derived from human iPS cells. Its transplantation is expected to provide improvement of cardiac function and amelioration of heart failure and become a new treatment option for patients with severe heart failure, who have no remedies other than heart transplantation or artificial heart implantation.
Based on the cutting-edge cell therapy research targeting heart diseases, the team at the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine, led by Professor Yoshiki Sawa, has been working on the iPS-CM research and development by participating in the Research Center Network for Realization of Regenerative Medicine, which is run by the Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED). They are currently preparing for clinical research as well as investigator initiated clinical study.
Cuorips is an Osaka University spin-off venture founded to develop and commercialize iPS-CM sheets based on the research data and technologies developed by the university.
Daiichi Sankyo Group has been conducting research on iPS cell-derived cardiomyocyte and their production, and is currently working on the efficient production process capable for commercial supply.
Daiichi Sankyo and Cuorips are aiming to commercialize iPS-CM sheets as a pioneering treatment for severe heart failure.
*1 iPS cells are capable of almost unlimited proliferation and differentiation into any organ, and are expected to be used in the field of cell therapy.
*2 There are two types of cell therapy: autologous therapy where the patient’s own cells are collected, cultured and processed, and allogeneic therapy where a donor’s cells are collected, cultured and processed.
Cuorips Inc. Company Overview
Location: Yokohama City, Kanagawa Prefecture
Established: March 21, 2017
Description of Business: Development and commercialization of iPS-CM sheets
Shareholding structure (prior to Daiichi Sankyo’s investment):
・Three researchers including Professor Yoshiki Sawa from the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine