Originally Published on Benzinga
Technical advancements in stem cell therapies have reportedly shifted the outlook of regenerative medicine, and some scientists are getting increasingly excited.
Cardiologist Dr. Joshua Hare is one of those scientists, and he’s both the co-founder and chief scientific officer of Longeveron Inc. (NASDAQ: LGVN), a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing cellular therapies for aging-related and life-threatening conditions. He’s also credited with helping to pioneer the use of stem cells as medicine for the human heart and regularly explores a future where regenerative medicine can prolong human life.
The global regenerative medicine market is estimated to reach $6.49 billion in 2027, up 9.3% from $3.05 billion in 2019.
Hare recently spoke at a TEDx Miami conference on aging and the advancements his team is making toward slowing down — and possibly reversing — the aging process.
Too often when people age, they become frail and disabled, reducing the quality of life for those who live well into their golden years, Hare said. He said prolonging a person’s life without restoring their health really isn’t living at all.
He opens his talk by discussing life in the 1880s and how people only lived to be in their 40s. He discussed how childbirth could be a death sentence for many and how the discovery of germ theory led to more successful pregnancies and childbirth as the human lifespan doubled over time.
He likens this discovery to regenerative medicine and how harvesting human stem cells can be used as medicine in the future.
Aging Should Be Treated As A Disease?
“Around the world, top medical scientists are studying the biology of aging, just as scientists in 1880 were trying to understand the biology of bacteria,” Hare said.
He explained how medical scientists are studying changes that occur during the aging process and how the entire body is affected — from the changes in blood vessels to a weakened immune system and one’s outward appearance.
He explains that “reservoirs” made of stem cells improve the health of vital organs and allow tissues to heal by replacing dying cells that are slowly diminishing. He poses the following questions:
- What if stem cells grown in the laboratory could be turned into medicine?
- Could it be a successful treatment for aging?
- Just as antibiotics addressed the germ theory, can stem cells address the geroscience theory?
Clinical Studies Are Underway
Almost eight years ago, Hare started Longeveron and began testing stem cells as one of many treatments to find a possible fountain of youth.
“When we think about aging, it’s not just the longevity of life,” Hare said. “It’s not just how long we live. But it’s also the quality of those years as human lifespan has increased. Unfortunately, the period of time where we’re disabled at the end of our life has also increased.”
Anti-aging treatments should not be focused on the length of human life but rather on the quality of human life, Hare said, noting that people around the world are at risk of frailty, chronic disease and poor health as they age.
Longeveron says it’s on a mission to create a paradigm shift in science and medicine, developing therapies derived from culture-expanded and isolated medicinal signaling cells (MSCs) extracted from the donated bone marrow of healthy young adults.
Grown in a laboratory, these multipotent MSCs reportedly have unique therapeutic properties, including homing to inflammation and tissue damage sites. By stimulating these cells, it’s sometimes possible to maintain organ health, repair deteriorating tissues and restore immune function.
The company’s website explains this phenomenon:
“As we age, we experience a profound decline, in both number and function, in our own MSCs, a decrease in immune system function, a decline in blood vessel functioning, chronic inflammation and other issues. Our clinical data suggest that Lomecel-B™ addresses these conditions through multiple mechanisms of action, or MOAs, that simultaneously target key aging-related processes.”
Longeveron’s current areas of research focus include:
- Hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS)
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Aging frailty
- Metabolic syndrome
- Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS)
Hare explained how CAR T-cell therapy can kill cancer and said he is ready to lead the new frontier in developing safe and effective cell therapies for some of the most challenging diseases and conditions associated with aging.
Companies like Statera Biopharma Inc. (NASDAQ: STAB), Concert Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: CNCE), Annovis Bio (NYSE: ANVS), Cassava Sciences (NASDAQ: SAVA), and Lineage Cell Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: LCTX) might be right by his side.
To learn more about Longeveron and how it’s using allogeneic stem cells to attempt to create a host of therapies for healing and aging, check out https://www.longeveron.com.
Watch the TEDx Talk here: https://loom.ly/1xhSmBY
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