Where do we stand with cell therapy in diabetes?

GTCbio | February 24th, 2017

Stem and progenitor cell therapy has long been suggested as the next frontier for many diseases, including diabetes. It is expected that over 350 million people will be suffering with diabetes by 2025, making it a major health and economic concern in the world. Diabetes results from the dysfunction and/or destruction of the insulin producing beta cells in the pancreatic islet. Replacement of beta cells by using progenitor or differentiated stem cells is a promising strategy to treat diabetes. In addition, some cell types are being used as supportive therapy to improve the success rate of islet transplantation in diabetes patients.  

The joint plenary session at GTCbio’s Stem Cell Summit and Diabetes Summit will be showcasing the following speakers from companies/institutes that are pioneering cell therapy in diabetes. These summits will be held at the Hyatt Regency on April 5th – 7th, 2017 in Boston, MA. 

  • Mark Zimmerman, Vice President, Strategy and Business Development at ViaCyte

ViaCyte’s product candidates are based on directed differentiation of pancreatic progenitor cells from human pluripotent stem cells. Marks’s presentation will describe first-hand experience with the challenges and progress in developing pluripotent stem cell-derived products, including manufacturing and quality control, methods of delivery, clinical trials, and marketing opportunities.

  • Felicia Pagliuca, Vice President, Cell Biology R&D at Semma Therapeutics

Semma Therapeutics is a preclinical stage biotechnology company with the mission to transform the treatment of diabetes through development of stem cell derived pancreatic islets, including insulin-producing beta cells, to be used as a cell replacement therapy.

  • Douglas Losordo, Chief Medical Officer, Senior Vice President of Clinical, Medical & Regulatory Affairs at Caladrius Biosciences

Caladrius’ is developing CLBS03 as a cell therapy for treatment of recent onset type 1 diabetes. CLBS03 uses the patient’s own regulatory T cells to treat the disease. The company was recently awarded a $12.2 Million grant from California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) to complete this trial.

  • John Campbell, Associate Director, Research, Development & Innovation at SNBTS, National Science Laboratory

John’s presentation will discuss the properties of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) from different tissue sources and how they can support and improve islet graft function.

We invite you to join us at the Stem Cell Summit and Diabetes Summit.

GTCbio’s Stem Cell Summit consists of two co-located conferences: 

  1. 14th Stem Cell Research & Regenerative Medicine Conference: highlights include advances in adult and pluripotent stem cell research, translation to the clinic, and revolution in immunotherapy.
  2. 6th Stem Cell Product Development & Commercialization Conference: highlights include discussion about stem cells for drug discovery and modeling, regulatory challenges, manufacturing and scalable processes, funding, partnering and commercialization.


GTCbio’s Diabetes Summit consists of two co-located conferences: 

  1. 10th Diabetes Drug Discovery and Development Conference: highlights include discussion about going back to basics, preclinical research, emerging therapeutic targets, and clinical developments.
  2. 7th Diabetes Partnering and Deal-Making Conference: highlights include discussion about partnerships, funding, licensing, and networking with patient entrepreneurs, decision makers, venture capitalists, government agencies, and more.