Regenerative medicine is a term that refers to a group of biomedical approaches to clinical therapies that may involve the use of stem cells. It is the process of replacing or “regenerating” human cells, tissues or organs to restore, or establish, normal function. The human body is an incredible machine, equipped with the ability to restore and heal itself. Regenerative medicine, then, is a process that is meant to enhance the body’s natural healing process and bridge the gap between nature and science by stimulating the body’s own repair mechanisms and restoring damaged tissues.
Regenerative medicine has several applications, including cell therapies (the most widely known), and regeneration by biologically active molecules (immunomodulation therapy). This medical application can be used to treat a variety of diseases including cancers, autoimmune disease, neurological disorders and infectious disease. While research is still ongoing, regenerative medicine is a life-changing practice that transforms and replaces problematic cells and tissues with new, healthy ones, giving patients around the world a second chance at life. Currently, it is estimated regenerative medicine could enhance the lives and health of one in three Americans.
Bone Marrow Concentration
Bone marrow aspirate (BMA) is a fluid that contains the cells taken from bone marrow. Bone marrow is a substance that fills the inner cavities of the bones, where blood is produced. The marrow holds blood and stem cells which, under the right conditions, can create new tissue like bone, cartilage, fat and blood vessels. BMA is obtained through a procedure in which the bone marrow is aspirated from the patient by inserting a needle into a large bone, most commonly the pelvis. The aspirate is processed in a centrifuge to remove the bulk of the red blood cells and concentrate the mesenchymal stem and other progenitor cells and associated cytokine/growth factors to prepare for patient infusion. The entire process is referred to as bone marrow aspirate concentrate (BMAC).
The PXP® System
The most efficient and effective route to retrieving high-quality BMAC is through automated processing. It is critical to minimize the amount of red blood cells (RBCs) in the initial bone marrow aspirate, as RBC contamination can impair cell function and diminish the overall effectiveness of the cell treatments. Though there are many bone marrow concentrate systems on the market, the ThermoGenesis PXP® System delivers high-quality, precise results that healthcare professionals can be confident in. The automated, closed-loop system is designed for sterile bone marrow separation and concentration, and is specifically engineered to eliminate RBCs, reducing the contamination rate by greater than 99 percent.
Stem Cell Concentration from Umbilical Cord Blood
One form of cell therapy that is widely talked about is the use of stem cells concentration from cord blood. The blood that remains in the umbilical cord after birth is rich in hematopoietic stem cells. It is possible to collect these cells and bank them in cryogenic storage. Since 1988, cord blood transplantation has been used to treat over 80 diseases. Historically, these were inherited blood disorders such as thalassemia and sickle cell anemia but more recently, in the past decade, numerous clinical trials have been developing therapies with cord blood for disorders that affect brain development in early childhood, such as cerebral palsy and sickle cell disease. Hematopoietic stem cells have proven to be an invaluable resource in regenerative medicine, both as a source of a person’s own (autologous) stem cells as well as a donor source (allogeneic) for others.
The AXP® II System
The automation of cell therapies has helped countless medical professionals do their job more effectively. The AXP® II System is a processing system that provides high-quality stem cell concentration from cord blood. The system processes cord blood samples in a closed and sterile environment, saving the highest concentration of stem cells while ensuring that they retain their viability. Like many medical routines, cord blood processing is subject to human error. The AXP® II System is designed to minimize this risk as a completely automated system that requires minimal manipulation, which in turn, produces consistent and reproducible results.
The PXP-1000® System
With the field of regenerative medicine continually evolving, the need to achieve a more refined and enriched stem cell concentrate has emerged. The final sample in a standard processing of umbilical cord blood typically has red blood cells set at 30 percent of the total storage volume. Although this is a fairly common and established practice for cord blood banking, medical professionals may have the desire to further reduce cell contaminants in their cord blood sample.
The PXP-1000® System is the next level of innovation, offering clinicians and researchers a processing system that delivers up to 99.5 percent reduction in red blood cells from cord blood, while preserving a high-quality stem cell concentration. Contaminating red blood cells in the enriched stem cell concentrate can have a negative impact on cell viabilities and therefore, would reduce the functionality of the precious progenitor cells. Like the AXP II® System, the PXP-1000® System is fully automated and processes cord blood samples in a closed and sterile environment with an emphasis on simplicity and providing a purer stem cell concentrate.
Stem Cell Cryopreservation
The foundation of regenerative medicine is built on the ability to freeze (cryopreserve) stem cells for current and future use. Many cell therapies require multiple doses and/or the use of donor cells and therefore, cryopreservation of stem cells plays a vital role in cell therapy. It is imperative that this process is executed effectively, from collection and freezing to thawing, in order for the cells to remain viable for their intended use.
The BioArchive® System
While no single cryopreservation method has been universally used, the BioArchive® System provides excellent protection for today’s high-value cell samples that meet tomorrow’s cell therapy needs. This system provides constant temperature control through closed-system sample handling by combining integrated control rate freezing, robotic storage and retrieval. Boasting up to 94 percent post-thaw cell viability, this fully automated system maintains cell integrity with individual storage and retrieval of cell samples resulting in minimal exposure to transient warming events (TWE). The system also provides accurate and individualized documentation for freeze and sample tracking, history and inventory.
ThermoGenesis and Automated Technology for Regenerative Medicine
The PXP®, AXP® II and BioArchive® Systems are innovative technological breakthroughs that have been developed with the needs of laboratories and physicians in mind, providing the resources and confidence they need to better serve their patients and client base.
ThermoGenesis Holdings, Inc. (formerly Cesca Therapeutics Inc.), is a pioneer and market leader in the development and commercialization of automated cell processing technologies for the cell and gene therapy fields, helping doctors, researchers and clinicians do their job more confidently and effectively. They market a full suite of solutions for automated clinical biobanking, COVID-19 testing, point-of-care applications and large-scale cell processing and manufacturing with a special emphasis on the emerging CAR T immunotherapy market. They are committed to making the world a healthier place by creating innovative health solutions for everyone.
To see the entire full suite of cell and gene therapy automated solutions, please visit the shop portion of the website today.