Vita 34 AG Expands its R&D Activities to Include Research Projects Involving Autologous Fatty Tissue and a New Project Phase in the Production of Active Agents

Vita 34 AG / Key word(s): Miscellaneous

18.06.2014 / 14:03

Vita 34 AG Expands its R&D Activities to Include Research Projects Involving Autologous Fatty Tissue and a New Project Phase in the Production of Active Agents

– Vita 34 intensifies research work and plans expansion of research capacities

– Grants for a new research project on the cryo-preservation of autologous fatty tissues approved

– Project for the development of cultural conditions for the optimized production of active agents in a bioreactor started

Leipzig, 18 June 2014 – Vita 34 AG (WKN A0BL84, Frankfurt, Prime Standard), a pioneer in the storage of stem cells from umbilical cord blood and tissue, and a specialist in cryo-preservation, is expanding its research activities in the field of biotechnology. Already in May of this year Vita 34 participated in an R&D project in cooperation with national partners in its own research laboratory. Moreover, Vita 34 will conduct a development project on the cryo-preservation of autologous fatty tissues together with the Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology Leipzig, and human med AG Schwerin. The project is being supported by the German Federal Ministry for the Economy and Energy (BMWi). The start of the project phase is planned for 2014.

The desired development goal encompasses a production permit for a cryo-technical procedure for providing a vital and safely applicable fatty tissue product. Autologous fatty tissue is used in reconstructive surgery as a filler material, for example in the treatment of burn wounds or in tissue reconstruction after the removal of tumors. The successful replantation of the fatty tissue, however, is dependent on the vitality of the fat cells. Since there are currently no adequate preservation processes on the market, the tissue transplantation must be performed in the present surgical practice directly after collection of the fatty tissue, in order to ensure ideal integration of the transplant.

Dr. André Gerth, CEO of Vita 34 AG, explains: “We expect an increasing demand for the cryo-preservation and reliable storage of cells and tissues thanks to the progressing development of personalized medicine. Since this field of medicine is focused on customized therapies tailored to the individual patient, autologous, or the body’s own stem cells play a significant role, as do autologous stem cells from fatty tissue. We can make an active contribution to the further development of stem cell medicine with the new research project.” In addition, Vita 34 has started a new research project in the field of the production of active agents. Dr. Gerth continues: “We are convinced of the potential of plant stem cells and the active agents produced from them for the pharmaceutical industry. By developing the corresponding processes for the ideal production of plant active agents, we can profit from the results of research.” The objective of a test performed by Vita 34 in a roughly three-year project is the development of a process that allows not only the production of active ingredients in the greatest possible quantities, but also in an expanded spectrum. To this end the plant stem cells are introduced in to the bioreactor for producing the active ingredients.

The expansion of research initiatives is a significant part of the growth strategy outlined by Vita 34. “Via successful research, Vita 34 can open up the potential of establishing new products based on stem cells in the field of regenerative medicine, thereby earning additional revenue,” explains Dr. Gerth. In order to participate in new medical knowledge and product innovations in the field of stem cell medicine, Vita 34 plans on continuously intensifying its research work. To this end the company will expand research activities and create additional jobs in the research and development departments of the Biotechnology business segment. Research activities of Vita 34 are supported by EU, federal and state funds in the amount of about EUR 570 k in the current fiscal year.

Vita 34 has significantly expanded the Biotechnology business segment since the takeover of BioPlanta GmbH in 2012, and has established it as the research arm of the company. The goal is the development of a biological process for producing cell and tissue cultures, as well as its use in the optimization and multiplication of cell lines. Here, Vita 34 is involved in applied research in cooperation with renowned universities and research of application.

Company Profile

Vita 34 was founded in 1997 as the first private umbilical cord blood bank in Europe and, as a complete provider, offers the collection logistics, preparation and storage of umbilical cord blood and blood products. An outstanding position in the cryo-preservation segment is the basis for the successful work. Here, cells and tissues are preserved alive at temperatures around minus 190 degrees Celsius, and can be used if needed in the context of medical treatment. Parents of more than 104,000 children are already taking advantage of this offering and have provided for their children with a stem cell deposit at Vita 34. To date, 26 therapeutic applications have been performed with stem cell preparations stored at Vita 34.


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