BioTime enters academic collaborations to advance its hydrogel for vocal fold scarring

BioTime is entering into a partnership with the University of Wisconsin and Belgium's Louvain University to develop the company's hydrogel-based treatment for vocal fold scarring.

Following the completion of preclinical studies in collaboration with the universities, a clinical trial is planned in partnership with Cliniques Universitaires UCL Mont-Godinne in Belgium.

The release says nonclinical studies have shown that localized injection of HyStem during surgery is beneficial because the treatment improves tissue viscoelasticity.

But the company believes the technology could have other applications as well. "Our numerous academic collaborations play an important role in advancing these novel applications in medicine," said William Tew, BioTime's chief commercial officer, in a statement. "For example, we are seeing numerous scientific publications utilizing HyStem technology in stem cell transplantation in the central nervous system, heart, liver, skin, orthopedic, and other tissues. We plan additional collaborations to further expand the breadth of uses of HyStem technology as part of our strategy to aggressively commercialize this platform."

BioTime says its hydrogels form matrices and scaffolds in medical devices, engineered tissues and regenerative medicine applications. The company sells the 510(k)-cleared Premvia for wound management.

Hydrogel is a hydrophilic, gel-like substance that has many uses in drug delivery. In June, Harvard University researchers announced that they have developed a system for releasing high doses of drugs in short bursts using ultrasound and a self-healing hydrogel.

- read the release