Veintis™, the bioinspired tissue-engineered vascular graft developed by the Chilean biotech company Cells for Cells SA, has progressed to the second round one of China's most renowned startup competitions. The Innovation and Creativity Competition of Central Enterprises is a double innovation competition sponsored by the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of the State Council. It aims to build an open and collaborative innovation platform, gather and integrate various innovative resources of central enterprises and society, stimulate the innovation vitality of scientific and technological personnel, promote the transfer and transformation of scientific and technological achievements of central enterprises, and give full play to the national strategy of central enterprises. Since its launch, this competition has received strong support and attention from Chinese and international investors, corporations and leaders. In 2018's competition, 149 projects used scientific and technological achievements as shares to establish new company operations; 108 projects completed new product development; 95 projects formed cooperation with other companies, and signed contracts worth 1.27 billion Chinese Yuan (almost 200 Million USD) in 2019. With this recognition, Cells for Cells plans to benefit from Stars Competition's extensive cooperation opportunities, including, but not limited to, scientific research cooperation and equity investment.
In this year's competition, after the first round, only a total of 298 projects were shortlisted for the next stages, among which Veintis™ was selected. This recognition comes just a month after Cells for Cells won the 2020 Chilean National Innovation Prize with Veintis™, a triple-innovation that includes a unique bioinspired vascular implant, a cutting-edge automated manufacturing process and groundbreaking business model. Juan Pablo Acevedo, leader of the project, regarded this as an "incredible international honor, the first outside Latin America, that will support the development and efforts of the team towards bringing an affordable and customizable regenerative tissue-engineered vascular graft to those who need it." For further information see the IDTechEx report on Tissue Engineering 2018-2028: Technologies, Markets, Forecasts.
The awarded Chilean technology consists of a tissue-engineered vascular graft and a rapid manufacturing robot that can personalize the implant according to the patients' requirements. The automated procedure requires less than an hour to fabricate a ready-to-transplant graft at point of care. Through this technique, the product acquires a multilayered structure that mimics the anatomy of native vasculature including intima, media and adventitia layers. Veintis™ is made of bioresorbable nanofibers that are strategically oriented to replicate mechanical responses of human vasculature, thus minimizing the chances of developing neointimal hyperplasia and thrombogenesis, considered as the current major setbacks. In addition, the construct is compatible with stem cells incorporation that can increase the graft integration and reduce the potential risk of infection and inflammation observed in traditional alternatives (synthetic grafts). This technology combo would enable the patient's own body to naturally restore a new blood vessel.
Recently, Veintis™ reinforced its commercial application with an IP approval in both the US and the European Union, protecting the automated manufacturing method for biofabricating tissue-engineered implants. While the Cells for Cells team received all the positive news with lot of enthusiasm, there is still much to do to reach the final goal, the patient bedside. The validation of Veintis™ through proof-of-concept in large animal studies is in process, with the support of a state grant awarded by CORFO, the Chilean national funding agency. This pre-requisite is an important milestone anticipated by the team. Cells for Cells is currently exploring new strategic commercial partnerships to accelerate the reach of its patented solution to the international market. The technology is intended to transform the way personalized implants, and tissue-engineered conduits in particular, are monetized.
About Cells for Cells SA
Cells for Cells is a Chilean-based biotech company dedicated to the research, development and commercialization of cell therapies and tissue-engineered solutions. Cells for Cells counts with a broad biotechnological portfolio including Cellistem®OA and Cellistem®IC, a clinical trial-supported stem cell therapy for the treatment of knee osteoarthritis and heart failure, Inkure®, a bioink for high resolution 3D bioprinting, Oxium™Exo, a culture media for the production of exosomes, and Veintis™, a bioinspired tissue-engineered vascular graft for vascular bypass applications, among others.
Source: Cells for Cells