TriStem’s Technology

TriStem owns a patented process whereby fully differentiated human cells can be retrodifferentiated into stem cells with the potential to re-differentiate into any other functional cell type, in other words they are multipotent.

This research underlying the procedure has been published in a peer-reviewed journal which can be found here.

TriStem’s technology may be a significant improvement over existing stem cell transplantation for the following key reasons:

  • the patient is their own donor, thus negating the need for a donor and immunosuppressant therapy post transplant to avoid rejection, reducing procedure and drug costs;
  • the number of stem cells that TriStem is able to generate is greater than is possible by conventional means. Up to 16 billion stem cells can be generated from a single patient in a single procedure over 5-24 hours, compared to 70 million by repeated harvesting over 5-6 weeks, and
  • no embryonic or foetal tissues are used in the procedure and there are therefore no ethical issues.

The procedure is non-surgical and uses equipment and techniques that are in routine use in major hospitals world-wide. The procedure can be summarised as follows:

procedure

There are several sources for the preparation of stem cells. The following table compares the risks and benefits of the major sources, comparing the features, benefits and risks of each to TriStem’s patented Retrodifferentiation technology.

“TriStem’s” Retrodifferentiation
Bone marrow harvest
Peripheral blood
Umbilical cord stem cells
Embryonic stem cells (ESC)
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC)
Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS)
Number of stem cells produced
Unlimited Small Small Small Theoretically unlimited Small Theoretically unlimited
Time taken
Several hours Weeks Weeks Hours Weeks Weeks Unknown
Pre-treatment required
None Yes Yes None None Yes None
Side effects
None Severe bruising to pelvis
Side effects of GCSF therapy
Side effects of GCSF therapy None Tumour formation (teratogenesis) Side effects of GCSF therapy Not known: in theory none
Hospitalisation for donor
None 1 or 2 days hospitalisation per harvest None None None 1 or 2 days hospitalisation per harvest None
Post-treatment required
None Yes Yes Yes None None Not known: in theory none
Cost
 $ $$$ $$ $$ $$ $$$ Unknown
Ethical issues
None None None None Significant None None
Tissue match required
No (autologous);
Yes (allogeneic)
Yes Yes Yes No Yes Not known: in theory no
Regulatory issues
None None None None Genetic Modification None Genetic Modification
Use
Broad patented disease applications Blood disorders, severe burns, corneal damage Blood disorders Blood disorders Several diseases under clinical investigation Musculoskeletal diseases Not yet in clinical use
Clinical experience
yes yes yes yes yes yes no
RetroDif