Citius licenses COVID-19 iMSC therapy from Novellus

By The Science Advisory Board staff writers

October 7, 2020 -- Citius Pharmaceuticals has exclusively licensed the messenger RNA (mRNA)-based induced mesenchymal stem cell (iMSC) platform developed by Novellus Therapeutics.

Citius has formed a new subsidiary, NoveCite, that will be focused on developing cellular therapies.

NoveCite will develop and commercialize NoveCite mesenchymal stem cells (NC-iMSCs) to treat acute respiratory conditions with a focus on acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) associated with COVID-19. MSCs have been shown to reduce inflammation, enhance clearance of pathogens and stimulate tissue repair in the lungs.

This next-generation therapy will be more potent and have higher levels of immunomodulatory proteins compared to traditional donor-derived MSCs. They also have the potential to reduce manufacturing costs because the cells are generated from a single donor and are clonal.

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