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June 22, 2010

Escape awarded $1.5M CIRM research grant.
Escape Therapeutics awarded a $1.5 research grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM). Dr. Basil M. Hantash, MD, PhD, was the principal investigator on the grant proposal. Escape's proposal aim is to develop the world's first universal pluripotent stem cell source for use in the allogeneic setting. Immune rejection of administered human stem cells remains the most important limitation for advancing stem cell-based therapies to the clinical setting, and Escape's aim has been to overcome this obstacle. Escape scientists have developed and validated a mechanism for overriding immune rejection of human adult stem cells and somatic cells, and now plans to create human pluripotent stem cells that similarly evade immune rejection responses of the host. If successful, Escape's newly engineered cells could serve as a platform for overcoming the key translational barrier confronting stem cell research today.

Reviewers noted that "If the investigators prove their hypothesis that durable tolerance will be attained upon using this tolerogenic molecule, they will achieve a major breakthrough, allowing the universal use of fully mismatched, off-the-shelf stem cells. This would have tremendous impact on the potential for cell replacement therapy."

Escape was the only biotechnology company to receive funding in the CIRM's recent Stem Cell Transplantation Immunology grant opportunity. For more information related to Escape's proposal, click on the following link:

2010 Escape Therapeutics, Inc. All rights reserved.

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